It’s finally time to pour one out for Stadia, Google’s cloud-based game-streaming service. Google on Thursday morning said in a blog post that it would begin winding down the service because it never caught on with users. Stadia’s death is another blow to Google and parent company Alphabet’s efforts to expand beyond the search engine’s core internet advertising business. Stadia now heads to the graveyard where so many other Alphabet initiatives (Loon, Makani and so on) have been laid to rest.
Still, it wasn’t much of a surprise to see Stadia’s flop. Rumors about its demise have swirled in the years since the service launched in 2019, culminating in a fresh round of speculation this summer (which Google officially shot down). What killed it?