Google reveals Stadia cloud gaming platform

  • Google has revealed its next-generation gaming platform Stadia at GDC, which uses cloud systems and to enable high-fidelity gaming on any device.

    Tech giant Google surprised the world at GDC 2019 this week with the reveal of its new cloud gaming platform Stadia, which promises to make high-fidelity gaming accessible to anyone anywhere in the world. Rather than running games on your home game console or computer, Stadia will run the game on a cloud server and then stream the video output over the internet to users.

    Gaming can be an expensive hobby to get into, with new game consoles typically costing hundreds of pounds and high-end gaming PCs costing even more, but Stadia will run on any device. The remote server will be running top-end gaming hardware that's better than most users will have at home, and you'll be able to stream using a low-end laptop or a small device plugged into your TV such as a Chromecast.

    Cloud gaming was tried before back in 2012 when OnLive launched a similar service, but it failed to gain significant market adoption. Some people's internet connections weren't reliable enough to make it work consistently, and the platform didn't secure enough partnerships with game publishers or find a really successful business model. It also sometimes suffered from input lag as there was a communication delay between the game controller and the server.

    This is where Google has an advantage, with its significant cloud-based server infrastructure ensuring that users are always connecting to the closest server possible with the lowest latency. They also plan to integrate the platform with YouTube to allow people to instantly demo games they see in YouTube videos. It's also probably no coincidence that this is being announced the same year as the rollout of 5G mobile internet, which has both the low latency and high bandwidth requirements to make cloud gaming a smooth and high-quality experience.

    About the author

    Brendan is a Sync NI writer with a special interest in the gaming sector, programming, emerging technology, and physics. To connect with Brendan, feel free to send him an email or follow him on Twitter.

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