We can test both GeForce and Google Stadia, it’s a nice time to calculate the performance of both cloud gaming services to see which one is better. So, next we are going to compare GeForce NOW vs Google Stadia to see which of the two more worth it, especially considering that both is are paid services.
Both services have already left the Beta phase and are in the hands of the players, and many of them say that we can now throw away gaming PCs and consoles because this is the future of video games. We say that not so fast, first you have to see what each of them offers us to be able to release such a statement, right?
GeForce NOW vs Google Stadia comparison
Up to 4K
Recommended network speed
35 Mbps for 4K at 60 FPS
25 Mbps for 1080p at 60 FPS
Minimum network speed
Chrome browser, Chrome OS, Pixel, Chromecast
Windows, MacOS, NVIDIA Shield, Android
€ 129 + € 10 per month (Pro)
€ 5 per month (offer for 12 months)
The price of the service
It must be said that the price of GeForce NOW is for the moment promotional and only accessible to those who participated in the beta (founders) of the service, so the rest of us must settle for the free version that is severely limited.
On the other hand we have Stadia, which is only available for users who want to spend 129 euros on the devices of the Stadia Founder’s / Premiere edition. Included in this package is a Chromecast Ultra and a Stadia controller. It also has a limited free version, but the library is quite limited, and the resolution matches GeForce NOW: 1080p at 60 FPS.
In this case, the three-month Stadia Pro option is also offered, which offers much more interesting games, and promises game at 4K resolution and 60 FPS if the network connection allows it.
The Google Stadia installation process is really very simple, although it is curious that you have to exit the browser to install a game and then return to it to play it. Google stuff. In any case, the process consists of installing an application from where you manage the games and then play them in the browser. Simple and straightforward while absurdly convoluted, but come on, no difficulty.
The browser is just as easy to use and you don’t have to go to any lengths to be able to start playing. Four clicks and you’re in, it’s that simple. Stadia Games
By the way, anything you buy will remain in the Stadia ecosystem and if at any point you decide not to renew the subscription, you will not be able to access them. Luckily, it works like the PlayStation Plus, and if you subscribe again, your library will be there waiting for you.
As for GeForce NOW, it’s pretty straightforward too. You simply go to the NVIDIA website, download the application for your operating system, install it, log in and that’s it, just like any other software. Unlike Stadia, GeForce NOW connects to your own library of games on the most popular digital platforms, so you don’t have to duplicate the games you already have purchased. In addition, the games are yours and you can continue to access them even if you do not subscribe to the service.
If you didn’t have it installed, you will have the possibility to do it, or if you haven’t bought it, to buy it. All easy and very simple, the truth is that NVIDIA has worked a lot and very well in simplifying its program. However, keep in mind that not all games are compatible with this service.
Graphics quality on GeForce NOW vs Google Stadia
We start by talking about Stadia. It’s impossible to adjust game graphics settings here, so what you see is what you get, which can be a disadvantage for players who are dizzy by Motion Blur effects, for example. With that in mind, apparently textures appear to be lacking compared to GeForce NOW, definition is not as good, and details are lost in images. In the same way, it seems that they have reduced the field of vision (it is seen at a shorter distance).
GeForce Now vs Stadia Quality
Playing with GeForce NOW, you notice that textures inevitably lose definition while you are moving (not in still images), but overall the definition is quite sharp. Resolution and graphics are noticeably better than on Stadia, and the field of view is the same as on PC. At best, in terms of performance and graphics, GeForce NOW is on par with a gaming PC, something Stadia falls short of.
As a negative point in this area, it must be said that the images have less colour, they are less vivid than on PC. But this comparison is GeForce NOW vs Google Stadia, and it must be said that in terms of graphic quality, the NVIDIA system beats Google’s by a landslide.
It must also be said that the game in GeForce NOW feels more fluid than with Stadia , it shows that they have optimized the bandwidth consumed by games and even with a Wi-Fi connection there is hardly any delay (of course, it must be said, THERE IS delay , which does not happen on PC).
Stadia is a very competent tool for streaming gaming, and we would expect no less from the “rulers” of the Internet, Google. The technology they bring us is more than enough for light games, and it is only if you compare it with the competition that its deficiencies really appear.
Yes it is true that it does suffer some FPS drops here and there, but few and far between. As for latency, as long as you keep a stable connection, it is also stable. It is higher than in GeForce NOW, that’s true, but once you get used to the fact that there is a little delay between your actions on the controller and that they are reflected on the screen, it is not something that bothers or even that you get to perceive too. Only at the beginning.
The gaming experience on GeForce NOW is quite compelling, and closer to what we get playing on local PC than Stadia. With this system, episodes of “erratic performance” rarely happen as the NVIDIA application calls it, there are no noticeable drops in FPS and, as with Stadia, if the connection is stable the latency is also stable.
Services with your hardware continuous evolution
As the hardware advances over time, so do the game servers in the cloud and over time the games will run remotely in a better way, requiring less bandwidth and with higher image quality.
In reality, although part of the bottleneck is in telecommunications, the fastest way to solve these problems is through the development of hardware solutions for specific problems.
In the battle of GeForce Now vs Stadia, image processing technologies via artificial intelligence will be one of the spearheads in Cloud Gaming.
GeForce NOW vs Google Stadia, the verdict
There’s no other way to put it: Google Stadia has some glaring shortcomings. Its model seems to be weakened by the transmission models of the competition or, in other words, these shortcomings are only seen if we compare it with other services, because the service experience is quite well achieved. In any case, this is a comparison and we are obliged to say that both the hardware and the Stadia service are inferior to what NVIDIA offers with GeForce NOW.
This may change once Stadia launches its free tier, but for now if you don’t want to spend money, play your own games, and enjoy the experience more, GeForce NOW is the way to go.