Survey: gamers baulk at Google Stadia pricing

Google Stadia

A survey has concluded that gamers do not feel that Google has given its Stadia game-streaming service a compelling pricing structure.

The survey, conducted by Broadband Genie in conjunction with Eurogamer, canvassed the views of 3,165 UK gamers. It found that they viewed Stadia with scepticism, particularly as far as the service’s pricing is concerned. Only 19 per cent of respondents said they were interested in purchasing individual titles, and only 5 per cent of those surveyed said they would be interested in renting games.

That’s bad news for Google, since the company revealed that most games on Stadia will have to be purchased outright – the £8.99 monthly Stadia Pro subscription will only include access to a few games. 86 per cent of the gamers surveyed said they would expect cloud-streamed games to be cheaper than their non-streamed counterparts, but Google has said that Stadia games will cost the same as their physical or digital-download equivalents.

Overall, 62 per cent of those surveyed said they were not interested in cloud gaming, with 36 per cent saying they were. Alex Tofts, Broadband Expert at Broadband Genie, said: “Stadia could be the perfect solution for those who would struggle to enjoy games due to the expense of a console or gaming PC. But with this price structure, it’s unlikely to gain much of a foothold with anyone who already owns capable hardware. The issue with ownership and long-term viability of Stadia is also a concern.”

Wesley Yin-Poole, Eurogamer’s Deputy Editor, added: “Stadia and other video game subscriptions are inevitably compared to Netflix, so consumers will expect to pay a fee for access to a huge library of video games. It’ll come as a shock to many to discover that with Stadia, you have to pay for new games on top of the subscription — and those new games won’t be cheaper despite being limited to streaming.”

The survey also revealed widespread concern about potential technical issues: as we reported, 30Mbps broadband will be required to run games in 4K resolution via Stadia, and a minimum of 10Mbps is required for the service to work at all. Of those surveyed who said they were open to subscribing to Stadia, 73 per cent said they worried that: “The performance or visual quality will be compromised,” while of those who said they weren’t interested in cloud-streaming services, 75 per cent cited the same concern.

Google will undoubtedly tweak its pricing model before Stadia goes live in November 2019, but the survey results strongly suggest the company will struggle to work out a pricing structure which gains traction with gamers who already own a console. For more information on Stadia, visit its website.