It’s hard to believe that it has almost been three months since Google made the rather gutsy move to take on the gaming console giants and to some extent even Steam but that’s exactly how long since Stadia has been running. It has been a rough first few weeks and, to date, there are still some doubts about its long-term viability. Its true test, however, will come when the trial period for Stadia Pro subscribers end but it will apparently make sure that these “Founders” won’t have to move out completely when that date arrives.
Stadia formally opened its doors on November 19 although many early adopters, a.k.a. Founders, didn’t get their codes until days later. This means that unless Google extends or announces a formal deadline, the three-month Pro subscription trial will end this coming Wednesday. These will naturally be a bit anxious about what will happen then but apparently, Google will throw them another bone for their early faith in the streaming service.
It has always been planned that Stadia will have a free tier but the question remains when it will launch. Some hoped that it would happen before the end of the month but Google’s statements to Android Police suggest there might be more waiting to do. That’s because it plans to land Pro subscribers on this free tier should they opt not to renew their Pro subscription, all before that free tier becomes public.
Although Google has made no formal confirmation or announcement yet, this is what we’re expecting to go down later this week. Founders and Buddy Pass holders who don’t renew their subscription will be moved to the free tier and still allowed access to the service. Whatever free game they got for being a Pro member will be under lock and key until they renew the subscription but any game they purchased on their own will still be playable. Plus, Google will allow them to continue buying games as well.
That leaves the question of when the free-tier will be available to everyone else and it seems that this will set it back a few months more. This is going to be disappointing for gamers curious to try Google’s promise of the gaming of the future but it will also be a litmus test of the service’s staying power.