Google has announced its long rumoured game streaming service this evening during a keynote at GDC 2019.
The service is called Stadia and it leverages the robust network infrastructure Google has built out to connect its data centres and nodes around the world.
The unique feature of Stadia is that gamer won’t need a bulky, expensive PC or console, they can simply click a link in a browser and be in-game within five seconds.
Stadia will run on any device whether it be a smartphone, tablet, Chromebook or a desktop PC. The goal is to remove the hardware barrier that has existed between games and people for ages.
All of the grunt work is handled by Stadia instances which render the graphics at up to 4K resolution with support for HDR. Oh, and Stadia will run games at 60fps.
This is what one Stadia instance looks like and how it compares to current consoles. It will use Linux and Vulkan. Unity and Havok on board to help developers use Google's servers to make games #GoogleGDC19 pic.twitter.com/87HXilQZyp
— Hypertext (@htxtafrica) March 19, 2019
Google also showed off the Stadia controller which connects to Google’s service via WiFi to reduce input latency. With that having been said, players can use any controller, mouse or keyboard they choose.
As for development, Google is championing that side of things as well by giving developers a variety of tools and resources to make games on Stadia a reality.
The platform will run on Linux and use the Vulkan graphics engine.
Google also announced a new division in Stadia Games and Entertainment which will be headed up by Jade Raymond.
Stadia will launch in the US, Canada, UK and Europe later this year. An exact release date for those countries was not shared, nor were details of a wider global release.