Ouya, the manufacturer of the Android-based gaming console which was funded on Kickstarter, has been backed up by Alibaba, a giant Chinese Internet company.
The news came in a report by Wall Street Journal, which suggests that Alibaba has invested $10 million in Ouya.
Earlier this month there had been rumors that Alibaba was looking into developing its own console or set-top box. It is quite possible that this move is related to the rumor, and the Chinese firm wants to strengthen its console project with this investment.
The Ouya console concept originally debuted in 2012 as a Kickstarter project, and was fairly popular with fans, raising a total of $8.6 million during the entire campaign. The objective was to bring Android-styled applications and games to the television.
The system was introduced to customers in 2013, and started going on sale later that year. However, Ouya has generally struggled to capture a larger part of the audience, and the excitement surrounding its console diminished significantly.
More importantly, the then unique features of the console are now openly available through services offered by the likes of Google, Amazon, and SmartTV makers.
Alibaba’s investment into the system may lead to a boost in Ouya’s success in the China market. Till recent times, China had imposed a ban on foreign consoles, and despite the restrictions being relatively uplifted, there is still a lack of exposure to the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 and their related titles.
A console from Alibaba could help appeal to the wider audience in China’s market. Moreover, the Ouya Discover game store is a great substitute for the Play Store, especially when considering that Google’s Android app market is not available in China.