What you need to know
- Ahead of Google's closure of Stadia on January 18, the platform has announced that the controllers, at least, won't be going the same way.
- Bluetooth support is going to be enabled through a new tool that will be dropping next week.
- In addition, there's one final game for Google-loving cloud gamers to enjoy before it goes away.
Google Stadia was one of the first big attempts to get cloud gaming going, though its natural conclusion is sadly one which most of us saw coming a mile away. The platform is to close for good on January 18, and besides transferring game save data and in some cases, ownership, to PC, there's been one big request from the community.
The Stadia controller has the necessary hardware to use over Bluetooth, but it was never utilized thanks to how Stadia works. Instead, the controller connects directly to your wireless network or over USB. But with Stadia dying, this left a lot of controllers in limbo, and worse, potential e-waste.
Fortunately, at the eleventh hour, Google has come through with a surprise gift for its soon-to-be ex-Stadia players. Next week a tool will be released that will enable Bluetooth on the Stadia controller so you can use them wirelessly with other devices.
"In addition, many of you have expressed the desire to enable Bluetooth on the Stadia controller. We have some good news: next week we'll be releasing a self-serve tool to enable Bluetooth connections on your Stadia Controller. We'll share details next week on how to enable this feature."
That's not all, though. As a final hurrah, Google has published "Worm Game" to everyone's accounts to play before things shut down forever. This simplistic title was one of the games used to test Stadia before it went public, and it's a nice touch to share with the community before closing up shop for good.
I, personally, have four Stadia controllers, and while they're not necessarily my favorite, I'm at least happy that now they won't just go in the bin. Or sit on a shelf next to my HP Elite x3 as a constant reminder of products I enjoyed that got canceled. Perhaps it'll even make a decent travel companion for the Steam Deck.
Get the Windows Central Newsletter
All the latest news, reviews, and guides for Windows and Xbox diehards.
Richard Devine is a Managing Editor at Windows Central with over a decade of experience. A former Project Manager and long-term tech addict, he joined Mobile Nations in 2011 and has been found on Android Central and iMore as well as Windows Central. Currently, you'll find him steering the site's coverage of all manner of PC hardware and reviews. Find him on Mastodon at mstdn.social/@richdevine