Google details what you need to play Stadia games in 4K on the web
Play Stadia Games in 4K on the web. We know that you probably wondering just what you need to see when the game streaming service reach its visual potential. The company is happy to help — although it might be disappointing for some would-be players. It recently posted requirements, and the main demand is a Chromebook or Windows PC that can decode video in Google’s preferred VP9 format, a 4K display to match and enough bandwidth to handle the “best visual quality” option. Stadia won’t be too picky about the overall power of your computer, then.
However, you might notice what’s not present: any mention of Mac support. Much like YouTube in Safari, Apple’s resistance to VP9 over patent issues (it prefers royalty-free formats like AV1) makes official 4K support unlikely.
There are still some limits regardless of what platform you use to play. HDR and 5.1-channel audio are still “coming soon,” so you’ll have to be content with a relatively flat audiovisual experience for a little while. And don’t forget, titles like Doom Eternal won’t play in native 4K. While you’ll get the best Stadia experience possible, the performance won’t outshine a local copy of a game on a well-equipped PC.
Google last week began rolling out 4K Stadia gaming on the web, though it has yet to publicize the new capability. Widely available today, an updated Stadia support document details the web requirements for 4K and it notably excludes the Mac.
A 4K monitor is also required, but some in the community have found workarounds. One omission today is macOS, given its lack of native VP9 hardware decoding. (That said, you can unofficially get 4K on the Mac with the Stadia+ third-party extension.)
Apple does not support the codec, and that most noticeably manifests as Safari not supporting 4K YouTube, with the YouTube for Apple TV app having the same deficiency. Linux support is also not documented.