OnLive, the streaming gaming service, is coming to GoogleTV and could just be the killer app for Google's set-top box. With OnLive, gamers can play current video games that don't actually run on the user's local hardware. Instead, the games run on OnLive's own servers and the graphics are streamed to your computer. OnLive lets you rent games for a few days, or you can buy unlimited access to a game as well.
There is one letdown, though. For the time being, you will only be able to watch games that others are playing on the service. Google and OnLive are working together to bring full OnLive gameplay to GoogleTV, however, and the two companies are showcasing some OnLive-enabled hardware from VIZIO at CES this week. Google also promises that "more Google TV devices are coming, with OnLive built right in."
As OnLive doesn't need any powerful hardware to run on a remote machine, GoogleTV should be easily capable of running the service. Hardcore gamers, of course, won't ditch their Xboxes and PlayStation anytime soon, but for casual gamers, this could be a worthwhile alternative to buying yet another device.