Skip to main content

Stadia: Google thinks data caps will increase, no pre-launch beta, games similarly priced

This month’s Stadia Connect revealed pricing for the November launch, games, and more about how the streaming service works. In interviews this week, Google’s Phil Harrison touched on Stadia data caps and no further betas, as well as game pricing and availability.

Stadia data caps

At least in the United States, data consumption is a notable concern for all game streaming services. While subscribers might have speeds higher than 10Mbps, several ISPs stateside enforce 1TB data caps. As others have noted, 4K streaming on Stadia would burst through that limit in 65 hours.

Speaking to GameSpot, the Stadia VP starts by contesting the “math calculations that people have done.” He argues that they don’t reflect compression that Google will “sometimes” performs, with Stadia during those periods “using significantly less data” than multiplying 35Mbps by the number of seconds you play.

More broadly, Harrison notes how “data caps moved up” in response to the popularity of downloading and streaming music, TVs, and films. However, Stadia will let gamers keep track of usage and control resolution.

“ISPs are smart [and] they understand that they’re in the business of keeping customers happy and keeping customers with them for a long time.”

No pre-launch Stadia beta

Meanwhile, Google will not be hosting another beta before Stadia launches this November in 14 countries. Harrison (via GamesRadar) describes the U.S. as the “most complex place to test” size-wise compared to Europe.

“So we are not going to do another test in the UK or Europe. If we had time we probably would have done so, but we don’t need to.”

Google Stadia launch details

Stadia games: Availability & price

The Stadia lead also told GamesRadar that digital purchasers will continue to have access in a scenario where publishers pull a game. Given the prevalence of movie streaming services in this day and age, more people than ever are familiar with the concept of content being pulled every so often. In the case of Stadia, a pulled game would just not be available for new players to buy.

On the same topic, Harrison (via Eurogamer) does not expect games to be cheaper on Stadia than Sony PlayStation or Microsoft Xbox. When asked why players would purchase on the Google service rather than competing consoles, Harrison again touts how games will be available on all your screens and devices.

Stadia Destiny 2

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

You’re reading 9to5Google — experts who break news about Google and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Google on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel

Check out 9to5Google on YouTube for more news:



Avatar for Abner Li Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: