Google’s announcement of Stadia is a big step towards the future of cloud gaming. The service allows players to stream video games via the cloud across a variety of different devices. Google is still keeping a lot of details about Stadia close to the chest, but during GDC 2019, the company’s VP Phil Harrison sat down with GameSpot to further delve into the service.
During the interview, we asked Harrison about Stadia’s pricing model. We didn’t get too many details, but Harrison did reveal that a pricing model for Sadia already exists. It’s just being revealed at a later date. In an interview with Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot, Guillemot predicted Stadia would launch with a «multitude» of pricing models. «Either you buy full price and you play; or you will be able to also register, possibly, to play either one hour or two hours a day. There will be plenty of ways,» he said.
Harrison was able to talk about the process behind deciding the specific model for Stadia, though. «[It was a lot] of very deep conversations with our developer and publisher partners over many many months, and years in some cases. A lot of deep consumer research. We have had a fantastic user research team as a core part of the Stadia team for two years now. And so, we have our point of view, we then test various hypotheses with consumers and publishing partners, and then get to the right result.»
During the interview, Harrison did confirm that Stadia would not support offline downloads. When asked if Google would consider adding the option down the line, Harrison said it was «not technically possible.» He further clarified that adding offline downloads to Stadia «would be a compromise of our vision.»
During the Google GDC keynote, the company announced that Stadia is scheduled to launch in 2019 in the US, Canada, UK, and «most of» Europe. More details, such as which games are coming to the service, will be revealed at a later time. For now, we know both Assassin’s Creed Odyssey and Doom Eternal are confirmed for the service. If you happened to miss the keynote, we’ve compiled every bit of Google gaming news.
If you’re still confused about how cloud gaming works, be sure to read our in-depth explanation. We’ve also outlined the top companies investing in cloud gaming tech.