Google’s Stadia controller gains basic Assistant functionality


Stadia Controller


Google said from the get-go that its Stadia controller would completely switch up the gaming experience. A button on the controller has been designed to link players directly to the Google Assistant AI helper, meaning you pull up tips and info — and even video tutorials — without losing your game. The feature has been available in since December, and now it’s rolling out to all players. But it doesn’t (yet) look anything like Google promised.

As Android Police reports, right now the function is only live on TVs — so mobile and desktop players will find the button does nothing. If you are playing on TV, though, don’t get too excited about the button’s offerings. It doesn’t yet detect the game you’re playing, nor offer options to provide related help. At this juncture, it operates in the same way your standard Google Assistant does: you can ask questions about the weather and control your smart home devices, for example.

Considering the Stadia controller has been lauded by Google for well over a year now, the lack of development with the Assistant button is a bit disappointing — especially as there’s little else to distinguish the controller from others. That said, progress is progress, and this small advance at least reassures players that Google is on the case, and that, hopefully, future developments will follow shortly.

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