Google Stadia vs. Microsoft xCloud: The battle for cloud gaming


What gaming service will dominate the cloud?

Google and Microsoft

Cloud gaming is here, and two streaming services, Google Stadia and Microsoft Project xCloud, are taking the lead. Stadia launched on Nov. 19; Microsoft began its xCloud preview in September. 

Google is a relative newcomer to the gaming industry compared with powerhouse Microsoft. It’s taking a different approach from the Xbox maker by considering its service a platform of its own that provides a means to play games without the need for a console or a gaming PC. Microsoft, on the other hand, is using Project xCloud as an extension of its console. 

Here’s a quick comparison of the two services:

Stadia vs. xCloud


Project xCloud


$129 for Stadia Founder’s Edition w/ Destiny 2 $10/month for Stadia Pro (2 free games per month) or free with limited features$20-$60 for each game

Service and games free during preview

Number of games

40 with one exclusive

93 games with four exclusives

Current compatible devices

TVs with Chromecast Ultra Pixel phones Laptops and desktops (running Chrome, or using a Chromebook)

Phones running Android 6.0 or greater with Bluetooth version 4.0+

Compatible controllers

Stadia Controller PlayStation 4 DualShock 4 Xbox One controller Xbox Adaptive Controller Mouse and Keyboard

PlayStation 4 DualShock 4 Xbox One controller Some Bluetooth controllers

Streaming quality

4K resolution gaming with high-speed internet, but lowers to 720p resolution with slower internet speeds

720p resolution

What’s coming

Stadia still has a ways to go before all the features originally announced by Google will be fully implemented. There are also more major titles coming in 2020. The Stadia team says 120 games will be released on the platform this year. 

Microsoft has plans to release more features for xCloud as it continues its preview in 2020. The company already revealed that its cloud gaming service will be an integral part of its next console, the Xbox Series X, which means it could officially launch at the same time as the console. 

Here’s a rundown of what’s coming to both services:

Stadia vs. xCloud – The Future



Stream Connect

Integration with Xbox Games pass

Crowd Play

Support for Windows 10 PCs

Family sharing

Xbox 360, original Xbox compatibility

Touchscreen support

Latest games as of 4/28




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