Google Denies Stadia Overheating Chromecast Ultra, Insists 4K Resolution is Real Despite Evidence

After Google’s less-than-stellar launch of the Google Stadia, many have complained about its issues- including overheating Chromecast Ultra units, and not truely offering 4K resolution. Google has denied the existence of both of these issues.

Many on the official Stadia sub-reddit have complained about the Stadia causing Chromecast Ultra units to overheat and shut-down when attempting to play at 4K resolution. The community manager of the subreddit “GraceFromGoogle”, replied to one user outright denying any overheating issue occurs.

“Thanks for bringing this to our attention. We know any sort of heat on a device can be worrisome, but we can confirm there is no thermal overheating issue with Chromecast Ultra. During normal usage (like watching cat videos on YouTube), the surface of the device may get warm to the touch, but this is working as designed.
The team has done extensive testing on the hardware, services and games—this includes tests of long Stadia play and video sessions—and have not seen thermal shutdown problems.”

A similar statement was also issued to CNN, and that they will “happily work with users to understand their particular experience better.”

Other users and reviewers have also complained about the Stadia not offering true 4K resolution- despite the settings on Chromecast Ultra sating otherwise. Speaking to The Verge, an unnamed Bungie representative confirmed that Destiny 2 was not truly running at 4K resolution.

“But Bungie later confirmed that our eyes weren’t deceiving us. “When streaming at 4K, we render at a native 1080p and then upsample and apply a variety of techniques to increase the overall quality of effect,” a Bungie rep said, adding that D2 runs at the PC equivalent of medium settings. That explains why the Xbox One X build, which runs at a native 4K and with higher-res assets, looks so much better than Stadia.”

Eurogamer also confirmed that Red Dead Redemption 2 was rendered at 1440p, and then upscaled to 4K on Chromecast Ultra. Google vice-president and general manager Phil Harrison did state publicly on Twitter that “Yes, all games at launch support 4K.” Games on Stadia running at 4K was also mentioned in advertising. Curiously, a tweet from the official Google Stadia account stating Red Dead Redemption 2 would run at 4K resolution and 60 FPS was later deleted [1, 2].

When 9to5Google reported on this discrepancy, a Google representative issued them a statement. Yet again, Google claimed their streaming console did stream at 4K resolution and 60 FPS.

While not admitting there were games running at less than those specifications, they did state it occurred “with the appropriate internet connection,” and that they expected “that many developers can, and in most cases will, continue to improve their games on Stadia.”

“Stadia streams at 4K and 60 FPS – and that includes all aspects of our graphics pipeline from game to screen: GPU, encoder and Chromecast Ultra all outputting at 4k to 4k TVs, with the appropriate internet connection. Developers making Stadia games work hard to deliver the best streaming experience for every game. Like you see on all platforms, this includes a variety of techniques to achieve the best overall quality. We give developers the freedom of how to achieve the best image quality and frame rate on Stadia and we are impressed with what they have been able to achieve for day one.

We expect that many developers can, and in most cases will, continue to improve their games on Stadia. And because Stadia lives in our data centers, developers are able to innovate quickly while delivering even better experiences directly to you without the need for game patches or downloads.”

What do you think? Sound off in the comments below!


Ryan was a former Niche Gamer contributor.

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