Google Stadia launches Party Stream while improving its existing live streaming features
Google Stadia has been enjoying a good period in recent weeks, with a number of game reveals. But today the focus shifts a little from the games to the people playing them. Google has announced a new feature for Stadia it’s calling Party Stream, along with improvements to the existing live streaming functionality.
The new features will begin rolling out immediately and should be available to all within the week. Here’s what you can expect.
Better live streaming directly from Stadia
Starting with the latter, Stadia has always been extremely easy for players to stream their gameplay from. It takes only a few taps or clicks to push your content to YouTube complete with your microphone. Besides highlighting recent improvements such as 4K and HDR streaming, Google is now introducing the ability to switch games and even devices without having to end and restart a stream.
It’s common when using third-party software such as OBS to be able to switch on the fly, but was previously impossible thanks to how Stadia operated. The new feature will allow the player to end a game without ending a stream, then switch to a new one or even an entirely new device. You could, for example, start by streaming Destiny 2 from your PC, end the game, then pick up playing Far Cry 6 on your Android tablet. All without ending the stream.
When you leave one game and begin another from a supported device, you’ll be prompted to “Resume Livestream”. It’s a small touch, but a big quality of life improvement for those content creators who stream directly to YouTube. The new feature will be rolling out in stages but all Stadia players are expected to have it within a week.
Party Stream means your friends can always watch you play
The all-new feature coming to Google Stadia is Party Stream. This is exactly what it sounds like, streaming gameplay within Stadia parties. It’s a more intimate way to share your gameplay since instead of broadcasting to the goliath of YouTube, you’re sharing it with up to 9 of your buddies.
Each Party Stream can support up to 10 players. And this can be a mix of those broadcasting and watching. You could have one playing and nine watching, five players and five viewers switching between them, or any other combination that adds up to 10.
While enjoying a Party Stream existing Stadia party chat features are available, including voice and emoji reactions. If you’re the one broadcasting, you’ll see on-screen popups to let you know when one of your friends starts watching, and also when they post a message or reaction.
Party Stream is another example of a feature that the cloud can offer where other platforms simply can’t right now. Players and viewers alike will see no noticeable overheads, just as when streaming directly to YouTube. And it certainly makes game nights a little more interactive.
Party Stream begins rolling out today and should be available to all Stadia players within the next 48 hours. Initially, it’s only available on the desktop and through the mobile web on Android, but assuming all goes well this will likely expand in the not too distant future. It’s here just in time for those Saints Row playthroughs, too!