Google Unveils Stadia, a ‘Netflix-like’ Game Streaming Platform

Google, with Stadia, plans to create a ‘Netflix-like’ platform for people to play and watch games together.

Updated20 Mar 2019, 05:51 AM IST
Tech News
3 min read

Tech Giant Google took an ambitious leap into the competitive, console-driven gaming industry on Tuesday, 19 March, by unveiling its new game-streaming service at a press event during the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.

The new service, called Stadia, will look to take on Microsoft's Xbox, Sony's PlayStation and Nintendo's Switch by eliminating the console altogether.

Google plans to create a ‘Netflix-like’ platform designed as a way for ‘people to play and watch games together’.

The service will enable gamers to ditch their hefty, expensive consoles and GPUs, and access a library of games through an array of devices with a chrome browser and an internet connection – desktops, Chromecast-enabled devices, laptops, TVs, tablets and phones.

The service, as per a Tech Crunch report, will also work across platforms so you won’t just be competing with other Stadia users.

If you want to watch the full keynote by Google at the Game Developers Conference 2019, click on the YouTube link below.

‘Netflix for Games’

"Our ambition is far beyond a single game," Google's Phil Harrison said at the Game Developers Conference.

Instead, Google wants gamers to "instantly access games by clicking a link”.

“The power of instant access is magical, and it’s already transformed the music and movie industries,” he added.

According to CNET, the games are powered by Google's high-performance computers. This enables the user to access a high-resolution feed of the game via a web browser, much like Netflix streams videos.

And they're streamed at up to 4K high-definition video, at 60-frames per second, meaning animations will move smoothly, the report said.

The company also revealed that plans for 8K-120 fps support were in the works.

The user can play by pairing a Google-designed controller, which connects via WiFi to Stadia’s back-end systems. Though the service will also support third-party controllers or the keyboard and mouse combo.

“It’s seamless,” Harrison added.

At the event, the tech giant also unveiled the Stadia controller.

A Google-designed controller to interface with the Stadia servers was also unveiled at the event in San Francisco. 
A Google-designed controller to interface with the Stadia servers was also unveiled at the event in San Francisco. 
(Photo: YouTube screengrab)

At a glance, its design-layout very much resembles Sony’s iconic DualShock controller, with twin joysticks, a D-pad, and shoulder buttons.

According to The Verge, it also sports a sharing button and a Google Assistant button, enabling the user to talk to the Assistant via a mic for accessing in-game hints if you get stuck.

“This is your gateway to the best of Stadia,” Harrison said at the event.

Google has been an active participant at the Game Developers Conference every year although 2019 is being seen as a very important phase for the tech giant.

The company, for the very first time, hosted an entire keynote at the event.

Google had started to prep for this announcement since last year, when it had unveiled its Project Stream which allowed users to stream console-like gaming content through Google’s Chrome browser.

As an experiment, Google had also tested running Ubisoft’s Assasin’s Creed Odyssey in a chrome tab, which reportedly streams smoothly via Google’s online servers and not on gaming consoles or PCs.

(With inputs from CNET, The Verge & Tech Crunch)

Liked this story? We'll send you more. Subscribe to The Quint's newsletter and get selected stories delivered to your inbox every day. Click to get started.

The Quint is available on Telegram & WhatsApp too, click to join.

Published: 19 Mar 2019, 07:24 PM IST
Stay Updated

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.

Join over 120,000 subscribers!