Television manufacturers haven't always done the best when it comes to gaming. With the rise of smart TVs, that began to change. Samsung has partnered with companies like Microsoft and Sony in the past to integrate gaming features and apps, but its latest push is its biggest yet.
At CES 2022, Samsung announced the Samsung Gaming Hub, an all-in-one discovery platform that provides quick and easy access to your favorite game streaming apps and consoles.
Available now for Samsung TVs, the Samsung Gaming Hub supports many apps including Xbox, GeForce Now, Utomik, and Amazon Luna. Players can use their existing controllers to stream games through these apps, and quickly launch any connected consoles directly through the hub. But that's just the start. Here's everything else we know about the Samsung Gaming Hub.
What is the Samsung Gaming Hub?
The Samsung Gaming Hub can be considered a game-streaming discovery platform, with a focus on convenience. On Samsung's stage at CES 2022, marketing lead Andrew Georgiou said, "The Gaming Hub bridges the gap between hardware and software to create a simpler, easier way to discover and play tons of games from great partners like NVIDIA GeForce Now and Utomik."
This serves as a one-stop destination on Samsung TVs for everything gaming, from the most popular streaming apps to quick launchers for connected consoles. By just connecting a controller, players will be able to immediately stream the full libraries of apps like Xbox Game Pass and GeForce Now (provided they have accounts, of course).
Samsung also aims to make it a place where people can view their favorite gaming content creators, like those on YouTube Gaming. With gaming becoming a more social experience, it makes sense that Samsung would highlight content creators as well.
Using "AI Gaming technology," it also creates curated recommendations on the home screen based on a person's gaming habits.
Samsung Gaming Hub: Streaming apps
Only a handful of apps have been confirmed for the Samsung Gaming Hub so far, though the company is working to bring more to the service.
Every app confirmed for Samsung Gaming Hub:
- NVIDIA GeForce Now
- Xbox Game Pass
- Amazon Luna
- Antstream Arcade
Samsung Gaming Hub: Supported TVs
According to Samsung, all of its 2022 Smart TVs support the Gaming Hub, including the 2022 Neo QLED 8K, Neo QLED 4K, QLEDs, and 2022 Smart Monitor Series. These select TVs will be powered by Tizen, a Linux-based operating system, like much of Samsung's electronics.
Support for 2021 Samsung Smart TVs has also been added, including the QN800A, QN850A, QN900A, WS1A, QN700A, LS03A, AU7000, AU8000, AU9000, QN95A-QN85A, & Q80A-Q50A. US-only models such as the 98QN90A, 32Q60A, all sizes of Q70A, and the AU8000 also support the Gaming Hub.
It's unclear whether the company plans to bring the Gaming Hub to models released prior to 2021.
Samsung Gaming Hub: Supported controllers
A wide variety of the best controllers are supported from brands like Microsoft, Sony, Google, and more. Samsung televisions let people connect these controllers via Bluetooth.
Samsung Gaming Hub supported controllers:
- Microsoft: Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, Xbox 360 (USB), Xbox Elite Wireless Series 2, and Xbox Adaptive controllers
- Sony: DualSense and DualShock 4 controllers
- Google: Stadia controller
- Amazon: Luna controller
- Joytron: CYVOX DX
- Logitech: F710, F510, and F310 controllers
- PowerA: MOGA XP5-X Plus controller
- Nvidia: Shield controller
What's more interesting is that the hub supports passthrough controller inputs, meaning that players can use a single controller to play cloud games and console games across all supported services without needing to switch back and forth.
Samsung Gaming Hub: PlayStation and Xbox support
While a large focus of the Samsung Gaming Hub appears to be on streaming, it will cater to console gamers as well. Through the hub's homepage, you can easily access any console (like the PS5 or Xbox Series X) connected to the TV, putting everything on one screen for a more streamlined experience. It may seem like a minor quality-of-life improvement, but it can go miles toward making everything more user-friendly.
While Xbox Game Pass is currently available, the Samsung Gaming Hub does not have a separate app for PlayStation Plus Premium.
Samsung Gaming Hub: Availability
The Samsung Gaming Hub launched on select TVs on June 30, 2022. People can access it through the Smart Hub on 2022 and 2021 Samsung televisions, within the main navigation menu across Gaming, Media, and Lifestyle categories. It is entirely free and integrated with the best Samsung TVs currently on the market.
Right now, the service is only available in the US, Canada, the UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Korea, and Brazil.
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