Google has launched the promised free version of Stadia. New and existing users will get Stadia Pro for free for two months. The company is reportedly also readying an Android TV app.
Google Stadia free tier
When Google launched its game streaming service Stadia in November 2019 it was plagued by issues, limitations and broken promises.
In the months since launch, Google has been trying to address the issues and limitations. The latest initiative is the promised free version of Stadia, which is available now. The free version will only give you access to Google's game streaming platform. You must purchase games on a per-title basis.
New and existing users will get Stadia Pro (usually $10/month) for free for two months, the company said. Games like Destiny 2, Grid and Thumper are included with a Stadia Pro subscription plan whereas titles likes Doom Eternal and Red Dead Redemption II are available per-title purchase. However, Stadia's game library is still very limited in scope.
- "Video games can be a valuable way to socialize with friends and family when you’re stuck at home, so we’re giving gamers in 14 countries free access to Stadia Pro for two months," the company said in an announcement.
Google readying Android TV app
To get started you need a compatible device and a game controller or mouse/keyboard. Stadia is currently supported on mobile Android and Chromecast Ultra (only with the Stadia game controller) as well as in the Chrome web browser for PCs.
A list of compatible controllers can be found here.
In a separate report, 9to5Google said that the latest Stadia app update includes multiple references to an app for Android TV, which is the operating system in many Sony, Philips, TCL (Europe) and Hisense TVs as well as boxes like Nvidia Shield and Xiaomi Mi Box. The updated app can already be sideloaded on Android TV devices but is not functional at this time, the report said.
Google Stadia is currently available in 14 countries: USA, Canada, UK, Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Belgium, Finland, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway. It will launch in more countries later this year.