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YouTube tests out new gaming service months after Stadia shutdown

Google claims it has nothing to announce at the moment.

Published onJune 26, 2023

YouTube on smartphone stock photo 18
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority
  • Google reportedly sent an email asking employees to try out a new “Playables” feature for YouTube.
  • Playables would allow users to play games on the YouTube app or through a browser on desktop.
  • A spokesperson states that the company has nothing to announce yet.

Google officially shut down its cloud gaming service, Stadia, back in January. While Stadia may be no more, it looks like the firm hasn’t completely given up on cloud gaming just yet.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Google sent an internal email to employees requesting that they try out a new feature made for YouTube. That new feature is called “Playables,” and it would reportedly allow users to play games on the YouTube app (both Android and iOS) and through a browser on desktop.

The report only gives information on one game that could come to the service — Stack Bounce. It is described as “an arcade game in which players attempt to smash layers of bricks with a bouncing ball.” The game is currently available on the Google Play Store and appears to be a mobile game where you smash through colored bricks while trying to avoid black bricks, as you can see below.

A YouTube spokesperson avoided confirming the existence of the Playables features. However, they did provide a statement to the outlet.

Gaming has long been a focus at YouTube. We’re always experimenting with new features, but have nothing to announce right now.

Outside of the Google Play Store, the company has had a shaky record with gaming. As mentioned earlier, the tech giant shut down Stadia earlier this year. It also attempted to launch a YouTube spin-off app called YouTube Gaming, before it discontinued that initiative in 2019.

However, it appears Google is still interested in carving out its own space in the gaming industry. But it remains to be seen if Google is willing to stick long-term with any of its cloud gaming plans if it’s not immediately successful.

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