Skip to main content

Google’s Stadia lets you stream big-time games from nearly any device

Introducing Stadia from Google

At GDC 2019, Google CEO Sundar Pichai unveiled Stadia, Google’s new game streaming service that has a mission of making gaming accessible to everyone throughout the world.

Stadia uses Google’s data centers to handle the processing power, allowing you to game at 4K resolutions with 60fps on virtually any device you own, regardless of its own processing power. In fact, former Sony and Microsoft executive Phil Harrison took the stage to demonstrate this feature.

Related Videos

Harrison showed off Assassin’s Creed Odyssey running on a laptop, then a phone, then a desktop, then a tablet, and finally a PC. That’s right, Stadia is compatible with PCs, tablets, smartphones, and TVs via Google Chromecast. Some TVs have Chromecast built-in, or you can buy the HDMI adapter.

What’s more, you can pick up your session directly where you left off on a separate device. Similar to the Nintendo Switch, you can play on TV at home and then switch to a smartphone on the go.

All USB controllers currently compatible with your devices will work with Stadia. That seems to suggest you will be able to use PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Switch controllers to play games through the service. That is a neat addition that completely removes the need to buy additional hardware.

However, the dedicated Stadia controller has its perks. The controller, which will come in black or white, takes the shape of the Xbox One controller but has the thumbstick placement of the PS4 gamepad. The controller has a capture button that lets you immediately share and save gameplay clips to YouTube either for yourself or for an audience. Streaming via YouTube allows you to record footage in 4K and 60fps.

It also has an assistant button that will provide instant help with tricky parts of games, like finding the solution to a puzzle or where to go next.

The Stadia controller connects via Wi-Fi to the data center, linking the controller to the screen you are currently playing on automatically. This could prove to be a welcome feature as opposed to re-syncing third-party controllers each time you switch devices.

Stadia is the culmination of the Project Stream test featuring Assassin’s Creed Odyssey last year. Price details haven’t been revealed, but Stadia will arrive sometime in 2019.

Google GDC 2019 Gaming Announcement

Editors' Recommendations

The best Wii games of all time
Promo art for Super Mario Galaxy 2.

Few video game consoles stirred up as much buzz as the Nintendo Wii. Before motion-tracking software was considered standard fare and shovelware began popping up left and right to take advantage, Nintendo looked to revolutionize the gaming landscape with the Wii.

The Wiimote and Nunchuck control system gave gamers a new way to game and opened the door for a new generation of interactive gaming. From brand-new motion-based party games like Wii Sports and Just Dance to groundbreaking installments to classic Nintendo series like The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and the Super Mario Galaxy, the Wii quickly became home to a stellar lineup of games for all ages.

Read more
It’s time for the age of always-online single-player games to end
Redfall Cover

Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League is one of the most anticipated PlayStation 5 games of the year, as it promises that DC Comics fans will get to see their favorite antiheroes wreak havoc in the Batman Arkhamverse. The co-op action game features a storyline straight out of Marvel's What If...? with most members of the Justice League getting brainwashed by Brainiac. And it has the distinction of featuring Kevin Conroy's final voice performance as the Dark Knight. On paper, it has a lot going for it.

There's just one problem, though. You can only play it online, even when you're going solo.

Read more
PS5 themes: Can you customize your homescreen?
A person plays Crash Bandicoot using a PS5 DualSense controller.

The PS5 launched with many features we loved from the PS4 missing. Over the years, a few have come back, but one that many aren't sure about is themes. These could be earned, downloaded, purchased, or come included with certain games that gave your home screen a new look and background soundtrack related to different games or concepts. This made customizing your home screen that much more fun and personal. However, is this feature on the PS5? Here's whether or not you can put custom themes on your new console, or change the background.
Does the PS5 have themes?

No, the PS5 does not have any themes. Instead, whenever you highlight a game or app on your home screen, the background will change to art related to that game, as well as show more information on it. While far from ideal, it is the closest we are likely to get to the themes we had on our PS4.
Can you change the background on a PS5?
Again, due to the PS5 dynamically changing the background depending on what you're currently looking at, there's no way to alter your background at this time. Since the background is constantly changing, even if you had a custom image, it would always be changing as you cycled through games. There are a few other ways you can customize your PS5, however, unless Sony gives us the option with an update, there's no way to set a theme on your PS5.

Read more