Google announced plans for a new game-streaming service called Stadia on March 19th, 2019. They released a logo, a controller, and a single game with the announcement. The controller will connect over WifI to Google’s data centers. This will make switching screens seamless. For Stadia, you would not need a physical console, you could play anywhere, at any time, on any TV. Google is one of the only companies that has the cloud structure needed to do this. They need a large enough data center to host the different games. Google would like Stadia to become the Netflix of gaming. YouTube is known for user-generated video online. According to theverge.com, “Google’s Stadia project is motivated, to a greater or lesser degree, by the desire to maintain its predominance as the home of gaming video. In 2018, YouTube accumulated more than 50 billion watched hours of gaming content.” Google will lean on YouTube to evoke interest in the new game-streaming platform.

Gaming in the future will be heading to the cloud. This is going to affect clips that players choose to share. Microsoft and Sony have built sharing features into their consoles to capitalize on this. This might cut YouTube out of the picture entirely. In order to keep YouTube alive, Google is trying to enter this new market. Google wants to have gaming video searches lead gamers to Stadia to keep users using both YouTube and Stadia. Another connection with YouTube will be when players are watching a streamer play a game on YouTube, the streamer can invite the viewer to play along with them. They will also include Google Assistant on the controller to help gamers as they play, or cheat to beat a level they are stuck on by overlaying a YouTube video that shows how to beat the level. Stadia will tie into all of Google’s ecosystem, including Chromecast, Chromebook, Chrome, etc. The player will have to use Chrome along with the Chromecast dongle to stream the game to their TV. The Android system will be how Google gets Stadia running on mobile phones and tablets.

A number of companies have tried and failed to make cloud gaming work. Google has not communicated on how much this new service will cost or if it will be a subscription. They still have not said if this will be something that will run games you already own over any screen or if it will be a full-blown streaming service. There is also some technical uncertainty due to Google needing to stream millions of games at the same time to vairing internet connections. Another issue is Google only has one game that can be used with the service right now. It will be awhile before this is perfected and available to the masses but it is something to look forward to.

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