Today Google dropped some big news about Stadia in its first ever Stadia Connect livestream. Not only did we learn which games will launch with the service, but Google also delivered important details like pricing and a narrowed down release window. Google will even also offer a bundle that gets you equipped to stream games through Stadia, which is certainly a nice consideration for those who don’t already have a desktop or laptop to play Stadia games on.
Of course, all of this news would be a lot more exciting if it hadn’t all leaked out shortly before the Stadia Connect premiered, but having official confirmation is never a bad thing. Diving right in, Google confirmed that Stadia will indeed be a subscription service that runs $9.99 per month. That will grant access to some free content – such as Destiny 2 – along with discounts on the games you buy, but it sounds like for the most part you’ll still need to buy the games you want to play.
Paying $9.99 per month for the Stadia Pro plan, as it’s called, will allow you to stream games at 4K/60fps, assuming your internet connection has download speeds of at least 35Mbps. You’ll need a connection that has download speed of at least 10mbps to use Stadia at all, and at those speeds, you’ll only get 720p/60fps streams. At some point next year, Google will roll out a Stadia Base plan that doesn’t cost anything monthly but caps resolution at 1080p.
Stadia will launch this November – still no specific release date yet – in 14 countries: Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, the UK, and the US, with plans to expand the service to more countries in 2020. Per Google’s Stadia FAQ, Hawaii, Guam, and the US Virgin Islands won’t be supported at launch, though Alaska and Puerto Rico will be.
At launch (and for the rest of 2019 after that), the only way to sign up for Stadia will be to purchase the Stadia Founder’s Bundle, which runs $129 and includes a Night Blue Stadia Controller, three months of Stadia Pro, a Chromecast Ultra, and a buddy pass that allows you to give a friend three months of Stadia Pro as well. You’ll also get to pick out your Stadia name early, and you’ll get a special Founder’s badge displayed alongside it.
As far as launch titles are concerned, those are still up in the air. Google has published a list of games that will be available through Stadia at some point in the future, but with no firm release date for the service yet, we don’t know which of the games on that list will be available from day one.
Finally, Google says that the plan with Stadia is to enable game streaming on all devices, whether they’re TVs, laptops, desktops, tablets, or smartphones. Stadia will support smartphone streaming at launch, but only on the Pixel 3 and 3a families of devices. After today’s Stadia Connect, there are still plenty of questions that need answers, so hopefully we’ll get those before long. Stay tuned!