GOOGLE’S upcoming Stadia game-streaming service could kill the Xbox and PS4 – but is your internet good enough to use it?
You’ll need speedy WiFi to play high-quality games on Google Stadia, so we reveal how to check it your internet is up to scratch.
Reuters Google Stadia is a game-streaming service that lets you play without a console
What is Google Stadia?
Revealed on March 19, Google Stadia promises games at better quality than you can get with a current-generation console, playable on any device with a web browser.
It does this by running the games themselves on computers that sit in Google’s data centres around the world, and then streaming the video output to your screen.
Those computers are more powerful, by at least one measure, than a PS4 Pro and Xbox One X combined.
AP:Associated Press All you need to play is an app or web browser and the Google Stadia game controller
What internet speed do you need for Google Stadia?
Speaking to Kotaku, Google Stadia’s Phil Harrison confirmed that you’d need a download speed of around 25Mbit/s (megabits per second) to play Full HD 1080p games at 60 frames a second.
And to play games in 4K, you’ll need an internet speed closer to 30Mbit/s.
Most decent internet providers in the UK offer speeds at this level relatively cheaply.
And it’s even possible to hit these speeds (and far higher) using mobile internet with 4G, if you’re in the right area.
Video game streaming – how does it work?We explain it all…
When you watch a movie, the images you see are already prepared
That’s why very unsophisticated computers inside your TV, DVD player, or computer can playback film footage
But video games render the visuals in real-time, because a game never knows what you’ll do next
That means you need much more computing heft to produce game visuals, compared to a standard movie
So if you want amazing 4K PC-style graphics, you’ll need to fork out for an expensive computer
Alternatively, you could use game streaming technology
The idea is that a company like Google, Microsoft or Sony would handle the generation of the visuals on powerful computers at its own HQ
Then it would send what’s effectively a video of that game to your smartphone
You tap and play, and those commands get sent back to Microsoft or Sony, which then inputs them into the game, and sends you the visuals again
Because modern internet connections are so fast, this all happens in milliseconds
The resulting effect is 4K PC-style graphics on a smartphone – which is only possible because it’s not the phone itself rendering the graphics
It also means that you could potentially be playing an Xbox or PlayStation game on your console, and then leave the house and carry on playing using your iPhone
This sort of technology could eventually kill off gaming consoles for good, because all you’d need is a TV with game-streaming tech built in, and a controller to play with
But game streaming hasn’t had any great successes thus far
Sony bought a game-streaming called OnLive, but shut it down in 2015
And Nvidia has its own game-streaming service, but laggy performance has prevented it from becoming a mainstream choice
How to check your internet speed
Doing a speed test is easy – simply head to the hugely popular SpeedTest website:
You can also download the app on both iOS and Android:
SpeedTest will give you a download speed read-out in Mbps (megabits per second).
So as long as you’re consistently hitting 25-30Mbps, your internet is good enough to play using Google Stadia.
Investigationi-SPY I thought I was paranoid, but now I’m 100 per cent sure our phones listen to us RevealedQUICK FLIX Netflix confirms surprise price rise for UK – but only SOME users will see hike SPACE RACE Elon Musk’s SpaceX could cut London to New York flight to just 29 minutes JEEPERS CREASERS Samsung slammed over ugly crease in £1,800 Galaxy Fold phone screen VANISHING ACT Google+ and Gmail Inbox will soon be DELETED – and your photos will vanish CORE OF THE PROBLEM? Apple engineer says pressure to design iPhone is reason I’m divorced
Microsoft is reportedly planning to release a “cheap” new Xbox that doesn’t use discs on May 7.
Gamers will have to wait until 2020 for an Xbox Two (or whatever the follow-up to the Xbox One family is called), though that is widely expected to come in two flavours too, one of which will also lack an optical drive.
The new device “family”, codenamed Scarlett, has been in the works for some time.
Are you tempted by Google Stadia? Let us know in the comments!
We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online news team? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0207 782 4368 . We pay for videos too. Click here to upload yours.