July 6, 2022

Google Under Fire Over Stadia Issues

Google has come under a lot of fire in the past week over the Stadia. Google has taken a massive hit in reputation;-Chromecast ultra devices have been reportedly overheating, and some devices were not being delivered in time for release. However, Stadia’s performance issues have been one of the worst claims and act committed.

The issue started back when Google was still promoting the Stadia. The tech-giants touted that the platform would be able to stream 4K games at 60 frames per second. At one point, Google even made the bold claim that Stadia’s GPU had more power than the PlayStation 4 Pro and Xbox One X. Combined. (Stadia’s GPU supposedly had a whopping 10.7 teraflops. This was said on stage. In front of the press.)

Recently, the website 9to5google and The Verge noted how Destiny 2 performs on Stadia. Specifically speaking about how developers Bungie noted how;

“…the game isn’t the same 4K version as on other platforms. Rather, Destiny 2 on Stadia renders at 1080p and is upscaled to improve the quality. In other words, Destiny 2 currently never plays in 4K on Stadia”.

https://9to5google.com/2019/11/24/stadia-4k-games-quality/amp/

Which, I’m sure you’ll agree, is pretty damning on Google’s behalf. However, it doesn’t stop there. As 9to5google also noted, Red Dead Redemption 2 also suffers with a lack of power. RDR2 does perform slightly better than Destiny 2, but not by much. The game plays at 1440p. It is then upscaled to 4K. And Twitter user Pixelbuster (@Nitomatta) even provided side-by-side captures of Stadia against the One X.

https://twitter.com/Nitomatta/status/1196485009315520512

Oh, Phil

This is further damning Stadia’s reputation as a viable alternative to traditional consoles and hurting Google’s future as well. Google’s Phil Harrison said, explicitly, about how Stadia would perform at launch.

Bold Claim

The fact of the matter is, Google just hasn’t quite hit the ground running with Stadia. In theory, it’s a great product and a great project. In theory. However, with the current set-up and bugs to work out, it feels more like a beta right now. Which, when you’re paying £8.99/month for Stadia Pro to play these games, isn’t great.

Google has stated how they do intend to improve performances and make things better for Stadia users. In a statement, Google said;

“Stadia streams at 4K and 60 FPS – and that includes all aspects of our graphics pipeline from game to screen: GPU, encoder and Chromecast Ultra all outputting at 4k to 4k TVs, with the appropriate internet connection. Developers making Stadia games work hard to deliver the best streaming experience for every game. Like you see on all platforms, this includes a variety of techniques to achieve the best overall quality. We give developers the freedom of how to achieve the best image quality and framerate on Stadia and we are impressed with what they have been able to achieve for day one.

“We expect that many developers can, and in most cases will, continue to improve their games on Stadia. And because Stadia lives in our data centres, developers are able to innovate quickly while delivering even better experiences directly to you without the need for game patches or downloads”.

Is it the Future?

So, could it simply be a case of Google’s marketers overselling what developers were actually able to produce at launch? Possibly. It is the first product of its kind, after all, and Google has been adamant about joining the games industry for a while now. Lying is not going to help credibility in the long run, no matter how much you want (or need) to boost interest in your product.

Hopefully, for people who have Stadia already, things will improve imminently. How imminent that is, remains to be seen. For Stadia (and Google) to have a lasting impact in the market though, things really need to be rectified soon.

What do you think of the Stadia situation? Do you have an opinion on the way Google has handled things? Did you get a Stadia at launch, or has this whole debacle put you off for life? Let us know in the comments section below.


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