Google is shutting down Stadia, its cloud gaming service. The service will remain available to players until January 18, 2023. Google will return all Stadia devices purchased through the Google Store as well as all games and additional content purchased from the Stadia Store. Google expects these refunds to be completed in mid-January.
“A few years ago, we also launched a consumer gaming service, Stadia,” said Stadia Vice President and General Manager Phil Harrison. In a blog post. “And while Stadia’s approach to consumer game streaming was built on a strong technology foundation, it didn’t gain as much traction with users as we had expected, so we made the difficult decision to start ending Stadia’s streaming service.” The staff on the Stadia team will be distributed to other parts of the company.
Harrison says Google sees opportunities to apply Stadia technology to other parts of Google, such as YouTube, Google Play, and augmented reality efforts, and the company also plans to “make it available to our industry partners, which is in line with where we see the future of gaming heading,” he wrote.
Google has detailed some of the finer closing points in FAQ. Refunds will be made automatically through the Google and Stadia stores, and you won’t have to return any device. Stadia Pro subscriptions will Not You are eligible for a refund, but you will not be charged during the closing period and you can access the games you may have redeemed as a pro user until everything is finished. Google has closed the Stadia Store, so you can’t buy games or in-game transactions.
Stadia has faced rumors of its practical demise right from the start
The writing has been on the wall at Stadia for a while now, most recently when Logitech announced its new portable cloud gaming last week and Stadia was one of the few cloud gaming services not mentioned. But Stadia has been facing rumors of its practical demise right from the start. Google used to kill projects just a few years after its launch, and Stadia, a cloud gaming service from a company with few connections in the games industry, seemed like a prime candidate for early demise.
Last year, rumors abounded that it would be shutting down after the number of games released on the platform slowed and the company closed its in-house game development studios. When those rumors surfaced again this year, Google insisted That Stadia hasn’t been closed. “Rest assured that we are always working to bring more great games to the platform and Stadia Pro,” The company said in a tweet. Which was true… even today.
Microsoft, which has also invested heavily in cloud gaming, declined to comment. Nvidia (which makes cloud gaming service GeForce Now) and AT&T (which used Stadia technology to power two game experiences) did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Update September 29, 2:05 PM ET: Microsoft declined to comment.