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AT&T will offer six months of Google Stadia cloud gaming service to AT&T’s 5G and Fiber customers.

Under the deal, AT&T will bring the speed, and Stadia will bring the games. And for those who redeem the offer, Google will offer them a chance to buy a Stadia Premiere Edition (with Chromecast and a Stadia controller) for $20 for a limited time. Normally, Google Stadia Pro costs $10 a month.

The offer goes into effect June 9. It’s no secret that Google has struggled to get customers for Stadia, which is a cloud gaming service that enables high-end games to run on low-end hardware, whether mobile phones, consoles, or PCs. Google launched its much-heralded entry into cloud games with Stadia in November 2019 and promised it would make its own games for the service. But in February it shut down the Stadia Games studio started by developer Jade Raymond. Google is now relying on third-party games for Stadia.

AT&T wants to give people a reason to upgrade to both 5G and fiber networking technologies, and cloud gaming is one of the heavy-duty data consumers. For consumers who don’t want to spend a lot of money on new hardware every couple of years, cloud gaming isn’t a bad solution. But it’s clear that Google needs to add some must-have games to Stadia to boost demand. These 5G deals are increasingly common as networks seek to boost traffic. Verizon also recently said it would give out 6 months of Apple Arcade to subscribers.

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Google Stadia Controller

Above: Google Stadia’s Controller for cloud gaming.

Image Credit: Dean Takahashi

AT&T 5G and AT&T Fiber offer faster speeds so you can start streaming games from the cloud instantly — no need to wait for a game to download or an update to install. AT&T also says these networks offer less lag so you can see your actions respond on any screen in near real time. This is critical when it comes to cloud gaming because every millisecond counts, and delays or interruptions are frustrating. And AT&T says it delivers more bandwidth so you can stream graphics in 4K HDR and 5.1 surround sound, without consoles or expensive equipment.

Google offers a base Stadia service for free. AT&T Fiber offers plans at 500Mbps and 1Gbps speeds.

With Stadia Pro, you can claim free games now, and more are added every month that you can begin playing immediately. Stadia users can play marquee games like Hitman, sports titles like MotoGP 20, or indie titles like Human: Fall Flat. They can also purchase the latest games on Stadia, like Cyberpunk 2077, FIFA 21, Resident Evil Village, and Madden NFL 21.

AT&T said its 5G and Fiber networks are being optimized for gaming with technologies like edge compute and network slicing to deliver gaming at the lowest possible latency.

Stadia recently announced that compatibility with Chromecast with Google TV will arrive on June 23, along with other compatible Android TV devices and opt-in access to the full Android TV ecosystem.

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