Stadia had a launch that could be called “rough” if you’re being nice, and several less generous adjectives if you aren’t. One thing that soured reviewers was how the streaming game service’s much-boasted 4K resolution was only available on the Chromecast Ultra. It looks like that limitation is being fixed, as 4K is making its way to Stadia in Chrome.
That’s Chrome, the browser on PC, Mac, and Linux, and ChromeOS devices, all of which can access Stadia games from the web interface. Users started noticing increased 4K resolution earlier this week, a bump up from the 1080p limitation previously applied. You’ll need an “excellent” internet connection to see the increased resolution, probably well above the Stadia minimum 25mbps, and have the “Best visual quality” setting applied via the mobile app.
According to some quick testing on my end, it looks like 4K is only applied to true 4K displays and monitors—I’m seeing the increased performance on the 4K screen of the ThinkPad X1 Extreme, but not on my Samsung monitor with only Quad HD resolution. (Quad HD is not the same thing as 4K, because…reasons.) Also note that 4K resolution is only available to Stadia Pro subscribers.
Seeing the extra pixels on PC screens is nice, but Stadia will need to offer a much better selection of games if it hopes to compete with NVIDIA, Microsoft, and Sony as the new generation of consoles roll out later this year.