Google Stadia Controller will need a physical USB connection to smartphones and PCs at launch

Google Stadia Controller will need a physical USB connection to smartphones and PCs at launch

Sameer Mitha | 17 Oct 2019
HIGHLIGHTS

Google Stadia is rolling out on November 19

The controller will work wirelessly only with the Chromecast Ultra at launch.

For smartphones and PCs, you will need a physical USB connection.

Google has confirmed that gamers will only be able to use the Stadia Controller wirelessly with the Chromecast Ultra. If you plan on using the service on your laptop or PC or Pixel smartphone, you will have to connect the controller using a USB cable. A Google Community manager on Reddit said, “You'll need a Stadia Controller in order to play games through the Chromecast Ultra that's connected to your TV. As for wireless gameplay, this is limited to Chromecast Ultra. When plugged in via a USB cable, the Stadia Controller acts as a standard USB HID controller and may work on other platforms depending on the game and setup.”

This means that the demo we saw at the Stadia announcement event where Assassins Creed was shown playing on a number of devices via the Stadia controller wirelessly is still some time away. The USP of the Stadia controller is that it connects over WiFi directly with the server to help with latency. So does this mean it will work like a traditional controller when connected to a smartphone or PC?

Another thing to consider is that when Google talks about Stadia, it is positioning the device as a competitor to consoles and not the PC. The company has gone on stage to say things like you don't need to upgrade the box under the TV every few years, and also spoke about the fact that you need to wait for the game to download or wait for a patch to install. With the Chromecast Ultra, you are getting a 4K gaming experience on your 4K TV through Stadia but the question that remains unanswered is lag. 

Google Stadia is launching in 14 countries on November 19. India isn't one of the launch countries. As far as internet speed is concerned, Google has said that that a 10Mbps connection is enough to run the game at 720p 60fps. For 1080p gaming at 60fps with 5.1 sound, it recommends a speed of 20Mbps. For 4K gaming at 60fps with 5.1 sound, Google recommends a speed of 35Mbps. However, the key question is the bandwidth consumption during gaming which is yet to be answered. 

30 games will be a part of the Stadia launch lineup including Doom 2016, Red Dead Redemption 2 (read our review here), and many more. You can check out our in-depth FAQ about Google Stadia here.



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