In what already feels like disappointing news, Google is reportedly moving away from Stadia and plans to do something else with the technology. For those of us who have been playing on the platform since launch, it feels better than most gaming experiences out there. Stadia made Cyberpunk 2077 playable! Let me repeat that, because it bears repeating: When Cyberpunk 2077 first came out, the only platform it worked near-perfectly on was Stadia. That's something that shouldn't be ignored as the cloud gaming service brought quality games in HD to everything from your PC to your TV to your mobile devices and more, some of which you could link with a controller, and all of it saved your progress. Whether you like Google or not is secondary, as this is what the future of gaming should and will eventually become.
Sadly, that service may be going away, or at the very least changing, as a new report from Business Insider says they are quietly "deprioritizing" the service and are looking to repurpose it in some fashion. The decision was made as the platform has failed to retrain users from the previous year or capitalize on bringing in new ones. To be fair to the platform, it didn't help matters when Google decided to scrap their own gaming division so there were no first-party titles. Or terminate a game that was going to be made by Hideo Kojima, which certainly would have drawn eyes and new players to it. Nor did it help that they only went out of their way to promote the major games from AAA companies like Ubisoft, EA, and Capcom while failing to promote a lot of the indie and second-tier titles people could have access to. Here's a snippet from the report.
The focus of leadership is now on securing business deals for Stream, people involved in those conversations said. The changes demonstrate a strategic shift in how Google, which has invested heavily in cloud services, sees its gaming ambitions. Last year, Google entered conversations with Peloton to be a back-end provider for games running on the fitness company's bikes, three people familiar with the situation said. Peloton unveiled the first of those games, titled Lanebreak, in summer and ran a closed demo late last year that was supported by Google's technology.
Google last year also pitched its technology to Bungie, the developer behind the Destiny franchise, which was exploring aplatform of its own, according to three people familiar with the discussions. Under the proposal, Bungie would own the content and control the front-end experience, but Google would power the technology that beamed the games to users' screens.
A service like Stadia going to someone like Peleton is a total waste. Fingers crossed the company can come to some other agreement with a company like Bungie or Capcom on using the service. Or possibly a major gaming platform like Sony or Nintendo, or even the Epic Games and Valve, show interest to take control of it and revolutionize it for one of their platforms. Just because a bunch of people at Google have lost interest in it doesn't mean it's a bad product, it just means it could be put in better hands to help continue to revolutionize cloud gaming.