Stadia is launching this November and while the official AMA didn’t yield any answers about a specific day in that month for the release, there were plenty of other questions that were answered that should make the service more appealing to those with multiple people in the home.
For example, according to Stadia’s Director of Product Andrey Doronichev Stadia will have a Family Share feature available. It will not however be available at launch. Doronichev states that he and the team are looking to launch Family Share sometime in early 2020, though no specific dates were given on when exactly it would be added to the service, which means it could be around the same time that Stadia Base is launched, which is also sometime in early 2020, or it could be sooner or later.
Stadia will have a roadmap of features after the service is initially released, so if this roadmap is put out for the consumer before the Family Share feature is launched next year then it’s highly likely that Google will list the timeframe for this feature on the roadmap.
Doronichev doesn’t give very specific reasons for Family Share being available at a later date, just that the team is working on the feature and that they need a bit more time to get it ready before it’s released. In addition to Family Share, Stadia will also have a Parental Dashboard that allows parents a little more control over the games their kids are playing. This will be available at launch alongside everything else that has already been confirmed for a November release alongside the service itself.
Specifically Dornoichev says that the Parental Dashboard will give parents control over their kids’ experiences while playing games on Stadia. Whether that means parents will be able to outright block certain games from being played is unclear, but that is likely to be one of the featured controls that will be included inside of the dashboard.
It’s also possible that parents may be able to simply control the play time their kids have on the platform. For instance parents could have the ability to open up their version of the Stadia app on a smartphone and turn off gameplay at any chosen moment, or just set times for when gameplay could be enabled or disabled.
For now there’s no clear vision of what controls exactly parents will have, but any Parental Dashboard at all is sure to be welcomed for anyone that wants to limit game time on the service so their kids aren’t dodging other responsibilities or trying to play games that their parents feel they shouldn’t be playing.
Parental Dashboard will be all the more powerful once Family Share comes into play as Family Share will probably open up multiple profiles on a single Stadia Pro account. The reason for the multiple profiles is so that each person tied to the account can have their own specific interests. So if you like FPS games for example but your kids prefer RPGs, then this is something that separate profiles will allow. In short, the two features are likely to pair well together.