It’s official – Google is shutting down Stadia for good, just three years after it launched the “future of gaming” to great fanfare!
Google Stadia Is Shutting Down For Good!
On Thursday, September 29, 2022, Google announced that it was shutting down Stadia for good, just three years after it launched the “future of gaming” to great fanfare!
In his blog post, Phil Harrison, the Vice President and General Manager of Stadia, announced that they will begin winding down their streaming service.
Gamers will be able to continue playing until January 18, 2023, and most will receive their refunds by middle of January 2023.
A few years ago, we also launched a consumer gaming service, Stadia. And while Stadia’s approach to streaming games for consumers was built on a strong technology foundation, it hasn’t gained the traction with users that we expected so we’ve made the difficult decision to begin winding down our Stadia streaming service.
We’re grateful to the dedicated Stadia players that have been with us from the start. We will be refunding all Stadia hardware purchases made through the Google Store, and all game and add-on content purchases made through the Stadia store.
Players will continue to have access to their games library and play through January 18, 2023 so they can complete final play sessions. We expect to have the majority of refunds completed by mid-January, 2023.
Why Google Stadia Is Shutting Down For Good!
Stadia’s problem isn’t streaming, it was a complete lack of original games. Despite branding it as the “future of gaming”, Google failed to release any original titles.
Instead Stadia relied on third-party games, which it reportedly had to pay tens of millions of dollars to port over.
With no headlining game to drive gamers to the platform, it was rumoured as early as July that Stadia was headed for the chopping board, when Killed by Google (now suspended) claimed that it would be dead by the end of summer.
At that time, the streaming service retorted that “Stadia is not shutting down” and that there would be “more great games” to come. But two months later, Stadia truly got axed.
Stadia’s demise goes to show that, yet again, content is king. Whether it applies to movies or games, it is content that matters more than the platform.
Netflix realised that, but apparently Stadia didn’t get the memo, and is now paying the ultimate price.
Google Stadia May Live On… Differently
While Stadia is going to shut down on January 19, 2023, that does not mean it won’t live on… in other ways.
Stadia VP and GM Phil Harrison said that its technologies can be applied to other parts of Google, like YouTube, Google Play and its augmented reality (AR) projects.
He also pointed out that its streaming technologies can be made available to their partners, hinting to past overtures to Peloton and Bungle.
The underlying technology platform that powers Stadia has been proven at scale and transcends gaming. We see clear opportunities to apply this technology across other parts of Google like YouTube, Google Play, and our Augmented Reality (AR) efforts — as well as make it available to our industry partners, which aligns with where we see the future of gaming headed.
We remain deeply committed to gaming, and we will continue to invest in new tools, technologies and platforms that power the success of developers, industry partners, cloud customers and creators.
That effort may help assure current Stadia team members that their jobs may not be axed even when the streaming service shuts down. Harrison said that many Stadia team members will continue their work in other parts of Google:
Many of the Stadia team members will be carrying this work forward in other parts of the company.
We’re so grateful for the groundbreaking work of the team and we look forward to continuing to have an impact across gaming and other industries using the foundational Stadia streaming technology.
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