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More bad news for Google Stadia as it appears the company is planning to move Stadia away from a standalone gaming service.
As reported by The Verge, Google is looking to use Stadia technology in other to “power experiences from companies including Peloton, Bungie, and Capcom rather than attracting more games to Stadia itself.” That is, Stadia’s game streaming technology will be used not for its own catalogue of games but rather for other companies to bring games to consumers.
This technology has already been used in the wild, as both Peloton and AT&T have used Stadia technology to power their games. For the former, Peloton has added a game called Lanebreak to exercise machines. AT&T used Stadia’s services to power a browser-based Batman: Arkham Knight gameplay event.
The move away from an in-house game platform could have been predicted almost since Stadia’s launch. Not only does Google have a not-great track record when it comes to its catalogue of initiatives, the platform has failed to live up to its promises and expectations. Stadia had a hard time pulling in developers, especially those from the indie scenes, and top executives also continued to flow out of the company. Stadia even shuttered its in-house game development studio.
In a statement to The Verge, Google spokesperson Patrick Seybold seems to push the idea that Stadia is both a game streaming service for customers and business: “We announced our intentions of helping publishers and partners delivers games directly to gamers last year, and have been working toward that… [and] we are still focused on bringing great games to Stadia in 2022. With 200+ titles currently available, we expect to have another 100+ games added to the platform this year, and currently have 50 games available to claim in Stadia Pro.”
While continuing on with Stadia as a game platform and using its technology for business partner interests are not mutually exclusive, it is more than likely Google will continue to focus more effort on the latter than the former.