Yesterday, Google finally revealed its "vision for the future of gaming:" Stadia, a Chrome-based streaming platform that allows you to instantly and seamlessly stream games on phones, tablets, TVs, and computers. The more Google talked about and demonstrated Stadia and its features, the more it sounded like something from the future. By the end of the presentation, gamers were in awe, but also skeptical. And the biggest point of skepticism revolved around what type of Internet speeds people would need to stream something DOOM: Eternal at 4K and 60 frames per second. It sounded like you were going to need ultra fast Internet to even use Stadia. However, according to Google, you won't need very impressive Internet speeds at all.
Speaking to Kotaku, Google Stadia boss Phil Harrison said that Stadia recommends that a gamer has a connection of 25 megabits per second if they want to run a game at 1080p at 60 frames per second. But why about 4K at 60 frames per second. Well, according to Harrison, you'll want 30 megabits per second, which isn't incredibly demanding.
“We were able to test a lot of this with our Project Stream test late last year, starting back in October,” said Harrison when asked about what kind of Internet speeds are needed. “To get 1080p, 60 frames per second, required approximately 25 megabits per second. In fact, we use less than that, but that’s where we put our recommended limit at.”
“But with innovations that we’ve made on the streamer side and on the compression side since then, when we launch, we will be able to get to 4K but only raise that bandwidth to about 30 megabits per second. So if you have less bandwidth, we’ll give you a lower resolution… We do a lot of that for you in the background, and we will only offer up the appropriate bandwidth for the infrastructure that you have.”
From here, it doesn't look like Google is taking latency into consideration, but yet again, it's Google: I'm sure they've thought about this long and hard and dumped who knows how much money into research and development of Stadia.
Whatever the case, we should know soon whether Google is overestimating the amount of heavy lifting it can do on its end, because Stadia is releasing sometime this year.
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