Stadia says goodbye with a beautiful parting gift for players
So I bought my kids a Nintendo Switch for Christmas. Before that, the only real gaming going on in our home was mobile apps on Chromebooks and, of course, Stadia. While there wasn’t a huge selection of kid-friendly games and even fewer co-op titles, my kids are perfectly happy playing Stadia on a semi-regular basis. I know. You probably think I’m a monster for not getting my kids a game console before, but trust me, they have more than enough things to keep them entertained.
Anyway, when Google announced that Stadia’s services would end on January 18th of this year, I decided it was time to bite the bullet and get a console. After unboxing the Switch on Christmas morning, I quickly realized that we were going to need a few more controllers to get the most out of our new Stadia replacement. I sadly looked at the two beautiful Stadia controllers on our entertainment center and thought: if only.
For months, the Stadia community has been calling for Google to release an update that will unlock Bluetooth capabilities so that Stadia controllers can work with other devices. Firstly, it will be ecologically responsible by reducing the number of inspectors going to the landfill. On a more selfish note, I absolutely love the Stadia controllers, and I’d love them even more if I could use them for GeForce NOW or maybe even our Switch.
That reality really seemed like a dream as the Stadia team never hinted that this was an option, and given the fact that Google refunded pretty much everyone’s hardware and software purchases, I wasn’t holding my breath. We’ll Google has gone and surprised us all. As a parting gift to the Stadia community, Community Manager DanFromGoogle took to the official community forum to announce that Stadia controllers would have the ability to be unlocked for use with Bluetooth.
In addition, many of you have expressed a desire to enable Bluetooth on the Stadia controller. We’ve got some good news: next week we’re launching a self-service tool to enable Bluetooth connections on your Stadia controller. We’ll share details next week on how to enable this feature.
Stadia Community Manager
Details should come next week on how to use the self-service tool. Hopefully, this will turn the Stadia hardware into a full Bluetooth controller for any console or service you choose. Personally, I’d use the Stadia controller over the Switch Pro controller in a heartbeat. We’ll see exactly how well the unlocked controllers do when the tool is officially rolled out. Until then, the Stadia team gave one last gift to the community in the form of the free Worm Game available to all Stadia users until the service closes next week. It’s a bittersweet goodbye, but the decision to unlock the controllers was a classy one by Google, and I know many are grateful. Read the full announcement and the heartfelt responses here.