On March 19th, 2019, Google unveiled its Stadia Game Platform. It is dubbed as the ‘Netflix of Games’ and will allow players to play AAA games from any Android or Chrome compatible devices. This is the first gaming platform which has been designed by keeping the ‘game streamers’ in mind. Game streaming requires a fast consistent internet connection like 5G technology. Although 5G is still in development, it will provide speeds of 1Gbps when it is put in place by early 2020.
Stadia will allow users to stream games on a number of connected devices like phones, tablets, TVs and PCs without a proper gaming console. The games can be played with Stadia’s own controller or other existing controllers. Moreover, the best part of the service is that users will not have to download a hard copy of a game release as the game will be available in the cloud completely. Just log into your Stadia account and you are good to go!
Google Stadia and 5G
As stated by Google, the new cloud-based gaming platform will be able to host games in 4K resolution at 60 fps. In the future, the platform will be able to support 8K resolution at 120fps which is insane! Cloud gaming has its own set of advantages like playing high-end games from your tablet on your sofa, whilst the existing gaming consoles are tethered to a wired internet connection.
Imagine playing Borderlands 3 or Assassin’s Creed on your mobile phone at high resolution? Insane, right? Well, now it’s possible! With the superfast speed of 5G technology, gamers will be able to play games at their homes as well as on-the-go without having any problems. As the games are present in the cloud, migrating from one device to another will not affect gameplay. You can start off from where you left off while changing your devices. Impressive!
During the keynote, Google mentioned that for stable gameplay on Stadia, the platform will require around 25Mbps. With the current LTE connections today, this might be a problem. Moreover, the network will also need to have low latency which is a real challenge for network operators nowadays. Low latency is essential for every gamer as it helps to provide a seamless gaming experience with minimal lag time. But with the availability of a 5G network, these issues will become a thing of the past. The goal of a 5G network is to deliver a latency of 1 millisecond which will be perfect for Stadia players. Playing console games on your mobile device isn’t futuristic anymore! Sadly, 5G isn’t available everywhere yet and the future for Google Stadia is still unclear.
How Google Stadia might affect smartphones
As most of the processing is conducted in Google’s servers, future mobile phones will not require high-end chipsets to run AAA game titles. Your old Motorola smartphone with the low-end processor will be able to play them too, which is revolutionary if you think about it!
We have come across movie and music streaming services, but game streaming is totally different! The latest iteration of the S lineup of Samsung, Galaxy S10 uses Snapdragon 855 which boasts of stunning graphics and gaming performances. With Google Stadia and a good 5G connection, people will not have to shell hundreds of dollars on smartphones. Gaming specific phones like Asus ROG and Razer Phone 2 might get in trouble if Google Stadia becomes popular. Smartphone companies will focus on better displays and sound experiences instead of concentrating on high-end processing power.
If Google Stadia succeeds in delivering its promises, it will change everything.
Not ready yet!
5G won’t be completely available in the US soon and it might take a long time for the technology to pop up in other parts of the world. Still, the mesh home networks will be able to deliver the minimum speed of 25Mbps that is required for Stadia users. The developers perhaps thought of making the technology available to the users first before 5G technology catches up.
People who were privileged enough to try out the games on Stadia platform reported that the technology was working properly but lagged considerably due to poor internet speeds. Google later announced that they will offer the players with a knowledge base about how to improve the internet connectivity at home by moving and upgrading routers so that they can have an authentic gaming experience.