Google denies rumor of shutting Stadia down

Google Stadia Cloud gaming, tags: rumor shutting - CC BY-SA

Stadia’s official Twitter account has refuted a rumor that claims Stadia is shutting down. “Stadia is not shutting down. Rest assured we’re always working on bringing more great games to the platform and Stadia Pro. Let us know if you have other questions,” the tweet reads.

The rumor started after the Twitter account @killedbygoogle, which monitors changes regarding Google applications, shared a screenshot of a Facebook post from the fan Stadia group on July 28.

The post, which supposedly came from a person who was friends with a regional manager for Google, claimed Google is beginning its exit plan for Stadia by the end of summer. It did not specify an exact date for Stadia’s end of service. The post spurred a large amount of discussion and speculation, including a website that let users predict when Stadia would shut down.

The rumor regarding the potential shutdown of the cloud gaming platform also caused quite a stir on other social media sites such as Reddit. As Stadia was one of the pioneers of cloud gaming, its termination would have implications for other cloud gaming services and developers, especially regarding the viability of similar services going forward.

About Google Stadia

Google Stadia launched on November 19, 2019, as a cloud gaming service accessible through Chromium-based web browsers, Android TV devices, and various supported mobile devices. The cloud gaming service allows lower-end devices to enjoy games at 4K resolution and high FPS, limited only by an internet connection. It was known as Project Steam throughout development and debuted with a closed beta test on the game Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. It uses a predictive net-code called “negative latency” to minimize delays between the game and screen.

Stadia has its own official controller, which is compatible with a high number of devices to improve the gaming experience. It is one of the few cloud gaming platforms and one of the largest, owing to its Google backing.

It launched to mixed reviews as many tests by various gaming outlets found that the images shown were prone to compression, even on a stable Ethernet connection. Digital Foundry criticized the product, stating that the Stadia was not consistently able to handle playing games at 4K resolutions — Red Dead Redemption could only run at 1440p while Destiny 2 could only do 1080p.

Some outlets, meanwhile, praised the portability of the service, as it allows players to play AAA games without requiring them to purchase expensive hardware such as new consoles or high-end PCs. The low amount of storage space necessary for the games was also a benefit of the Stadia as many devices such as Chromebooks and tablets do not have enough storage space to handle most AAA modern games.

However, most reviews agreed that the Stadia was too unstable and needed refinement before receiving a full launch. Since then, it has not received many updates or official support from Google.

Most announcements regarding new game releases on Stadia are left to the discretion of developers, leaving fans to move towards community sites to compile news. This lack of support or attention from Google has left Stadia ripe for speculation, especially when it comes to the future of Stadia itself.