AirConsole: A New Way to Play Together

Playing together has changed a lot over the decades of video game history. From local multiplayer games like Pong and hot-seat arcade games like Pac Man and their likes, we have evolved to LAN games, internet games… followed by a step back thanks to the spread of smartphones. Casual gaming among friends now means that they are sitting on a couch with their phones in their hands, and some of them play mobile pokies, while others dive into Candy Crush, Clash Royale, or any other popular smartphone game of the day. But there’s a new way to play together – and it can still involve sitting on the couch, smartphone in hand. It’s called AirConsole, and you should pay it a visit today.

What is AirConsole

AirConsole is a new approach to local multiplayer gaming. Basically, it is a gaming console running in a web browser window, using smartphones as controllers. The service has over 40 titles to choose from, covering everything from racing and jump-and-run games to turn-based sci-fi shooters, quizzes, puzzles, and a series of party games (it even has its own version of Cards Against Humanity).

Using the service is very simple. One needs to navigate to the AirConsole website on a computer or smart TV, and do the same on one’s smartphone (or download the free AirConsole app on Android and iOS devices). The desktop console will show a numeric code that players will have to enter into the appropriate field to pair their phones with it, and voila – they are ready to play. From there on, the only thing they will need to do is agree on the game to play – and have fun.

AirConsole is a free, ad-supported service, with a paid subscription option – AirConsole Hero – that costs $2.99 per month.

A platform for developers

From a developer’s point of view, AirConsole is another platform to deploy a game quickly and easily. N-Dream, the Swedish startup behind the service, provides developers with the JavaScript API needed to integrate the game with AirConsole, the network, the exposure, and the traffic. Developers are rewarded with the full value of the first AirConsole Hero subscription cycle for each subscription started while playing their games.

AirConsole’s approach to gaming brings forth a series of possibilities. Since the controllers are smartphones, they can be used to control the games on the screen in truly innovative ways, using the smartphones’ sensors for example, or can be used to transmit feedback to individual players. This can turn playing with AirConsole games into a truly personal, immersive, and entertaining experience.