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Google’s Stadia service could shatter the barriers of Mac gaming

Google’s Stadia service could shatter the barriers of Mac gaming

Did Google just save Mac gaming? The Mountain View company never mentioned Apple during the reveal of its Stadia game streaming service at the Game Developers Conference yesterday, but Stadia sounds all but tailor-made for Mac users. A service that let you stream games from a remote server straight to your browser! The ability to play the latest games without needing to invest in fancy eGPUs, graphics cards, and yes—even PCs! Even in 2019, so much of this still sounds like science fiction.

I love my Mac, but necessity compels me to keep a massive PC running at home so I can play graphically intensive games like The Division 2 or Devil May Cry when they release. As we all know, many of these games never come to the Mac at all. If Stadia works as well as Google implies it will, I’ll never have to feel too guilty about using only a Mac for gaming ever again. Google itself would handle all the heavy lifting; all I would need is a browser.

Gently down the stream

Google’s presentation yesterday left plenty of questions unanswered, but here’s what we know. Stadia is a platform that will let you stream games from Google’s servers to any device that runs the Chrome browser (although it may limit the devices at first). Google itself will house all the hardware, and it claims that hardware is better than what we find on both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. When the specs flashed the specs on screen yesterday, they resembled those of the Radeon RX Vega 56. Supposedly Stadia works so well, in fact, that you’ll be able to stream a game as graphically intensive as Doom Eternal in 4K resolution at 60fps. Again, in a flipping’ browser. Ultimately, the only thing you’ll need to pay is your presumed Stadia fee (which is unknown at the moment) as well as your internet fee, although will Google sell its own controller.

Razer Core XLeif Johnson/IDG

If all goes well, in other words, you won’t need a setup like this to play a new big-budget game on a MacBook.

In other words, not bad. In still other words, this could change everything for Mac and iOS gamers who feel limited not only by the limitations of the operating systems but also by the Mac’s incompatibility with Nvidia cards and other PC gaming staples. If it works as well as described, it effectively tears down all the walls to Mac gaming we’ve dealt with for years. With a service like this, we wouldn’t even have to worry much if Apple started making its own processors for the Macs.

And yes, it sounds a little too good to be true. That’s not so much Google’s fault as it is the fault of widespread U.S. infrastructure and data caps that aren’t designed for running games at 4K at 60fps. Even if you’re lucky enough to have an internet provider who doesn’t have data caps, you may be one the the many rural internet users who deals with download speeds that are barely faster than the cattle grazing outside.

And that doesn’t even begin to touch on the questions of how well Stadia will work with Apple devices in particular. Yesterday I bombarded a Google representative with questions: Will we be able to use Stadia on both macOS and iOS? Will it work on Safari as well as Chrome? Will you be able to use Stadia with an MFi controller?

The responses were evasive but not dismissive.

“We aren’t disclosing specifics beyond what was shared in the keynote,” the representative said. He repeated that Stadia will be coming to Chrome browsers, which are available on “many screens” ranging from TV and laptops to mobile devices and tablets.

via Macworld https://www.macworld.com/article/3374542/googles-stadia-service-could-shatter-the-barriers-of-mac-gaming.html#tk.rss_all
link : https://www.macworld.com/article/3374542/googles-stadia-service-could-shatter-the-barriers-of-mac-gaming.html#tk.rss_all
March 20, 2019 at 08:15PM

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