Google is shutting down Stadia, the cloud gaming service launched in 2019. Players will have access to their games library and can play through January 18, 2023, when the service will no longer be available. Google expects to refund all Stadia hardware purchases made through the Google store by mid-January, including all games and add-on content buys from the Stadia store.
“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,” Stadia vice president and general manager Phil Harrison, wrote in a blog post.
On an FAQ page, Google says Stadia Pro subscriptions will not be refunded, but players can play their Pro games until the service wines down without any further charge. Hardware purchases made directly from Google do not have to be returned, and all refunds would be made automatically through the Google and Stadia stores. The Stadia store is now closed, and players can’t buy games or make in-game purchases.
While Stadia will shut down, Harrison says the technology that powers the cloud gaming service has “been proven at scale and transcends gaming.” Google will apply the technology to other products such as YouTube, Google Play, and its Augmented Reality (AR) efforts. Google will also be extending the technology to “industry partners, which aligns with where we see the future of gaming headed,” Harrison wrote. “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.”
“Many of the Stadia team members will be carrying this work forward in other parts of the company,” Harrison notes, but it isn’t clear what will happen to the remaining ones.