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Stadia will lower default settings to reduce internet strain during COVID-19

Google opened its cloud-based game platform Stadia up to a wider audience today, but notes it has plans to amke changes to its default streaming settings to lessen Stadia's bandwidth use.

Google opened its cloud-based game platform Google Stadia up to a much wider audience today, but says that it is aware of the additional strain networks are already facing as more and more people are working and socializing from home during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In today’s Stadia Pro free trial announcement post, Google notes that it is working toward temporarily reducing Stadia’s default screen resolution from the 4K offered to Stadia Pro subscribers to 1080p. There won’t be any strict limit imposed on streaming resolution, however; those unhappy with the slight downgrade are able to bump their resolution back up to 4K as long as their network speed supports it.

The wording of the note seems to suggest Google hasn’t yet put these restrictions in place and the full announcement doesn’t mention when the change to Stadia’s default settings will take place, though Google notes that “the vast majority of people on a desktop or laptop won’t notice a significant drop in gameplay quality.”

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