In an unsurprising turn of events, Google is shutting down its game streaming service Stadia soon, and will be refunding hardware and software purchases as well.
For years, Google tried to enter the video gaming scene with its own console and gaming service called Stadia. The tech giant threw all that it had at the service, but after three years it has decided to shut it down because it didn't perform as expected.
In a blog, Google Stadia Vice President and General Manager Phil Harrison announced that the company is shutting down the service completely by January next year. They will also issue refunds for hardware made via the Google store, as well as game and add-on content purchases made through the Stadia store.
Harrison explained that Stadia players will still be able to access and play the games in their libraries until Jan. 18, 2023, the day after which the service will be shut down. He also explained that they are expecting most of the refunds to be completed mid-January, and is directing Stadia users who want refunds to the Help Center.
The Help Center explained that while most games can still be played properly, some aspects and features might have some issues because of the current situation. Games requiring commerce or in-game purchases, for example, might not work the same way they did before as sales in the platform are already halted.
Stadia players who are worried about their in-game progress and would want to take them to another platform may or may not be able to do so depending on the game. As per Google, while some games "support cross-progression play on other platforms," a majority of games don't and this means players will have to eventually say goodbye to their progress in those games.
Keep the hardware
In line with Harrison's announcement, Stadia will be offering refunds for hardware purchases, including the Stadia Controller, Founders Edition, Premiere Edition, and Play and Watch with Google TV packages, as long as they were purchased through the Google Store.
Those who purchased the above-mentioned hardware do not need to return the hardware in order to get a refund. Stadia players can display the hardware as mementos after the final wind down date.
Stadia also emphasized that while software transactions made through the Stadia store will be refunded, Stadia Pro subscriptions will not. Players who had an active Stadia Pro subscription until Sept. 29 this year, however, will not need to pay to continue accessing their Stadia Pro library and other entitlements until Jan. 18 next year.