It was nearly three years ago when Google formally launched Stadia, a cloud gaming service accessible on most products with an internet connection. Google today announced its plans to phase out the service and shut it down permanently. Despite being a great service, the main reason for its closure was that it didn’t gain as much traction with users as Google had hoped.
While the news is sure to have a major impact on Stadia loyalists, at least Google is trying to set things straight by offering refunds on all Stadia hardware purchased through the Google Store. This includes but is not limited to the Founders Edition, Premiere Edition, Play and Watch with Google TV packages, and the Stadia Controller. Additionally, the company will also refund game purchases along with any add-on content purchased through the Stadia Store. Unfortunately, Stadia Pro subscriptions are not eligible for a refund.
Google currently has no refund procedures, but stated that it would send emails with more information and update the support page when things are finalized. Those who pre-ordered games will also get their money back. Those who have made hardware purchases through brick-and-mortar retail locations will unfortunately be out of luck, as refunds for those products are non-refundable. The company hopes to have a majority of the refunds it can process by mid-January 2023.
While the service is starting to wind down, players will still be able to access their games until January 18, 2023, which is quite a bit of time to complete games and tie up any loose ends. Google did state that there could be issues with games, especially commercial features, during the run-down, but most games are fine. Fortunately, Stadia’s underlying technology is not lost as it sees opportunities to apply the technology to its other platforms and services. Finally, it shared that members of the Stadia team would find new jobs in other parts of the company.