Microsoft: Google has tech and community, but Stadia needs content to succeed

Microsoft: Google has tech and community, but Stadia needs content to succeed

The marketing boss of Microsoft's Xbox division Mike Nichols isn't convinced about Google's newly-announced Stadia streaming service.

Speaking to The Telegraph, the exec says that while firms like Google have a lot to offer, there's a lot they need to sort to be able to compete. Nichols' comments are actually quite in line with's own thoughts on the Google Stadia platform - that the firm has announced some very cool tech, but some incredibly basic questions remain about the initiative as a whole

“Emerging competitors like Google have a cloud infrastructure, a community with YouTube, but they don’t have the content,” he said.

This is the first time that a Microsoft exec has commented publicly on Google's games plans, but we did have a look behind the curtain in the wake of this year's GDC at what Xbox boss Phil Spencer thinks about the tech.

In a leaked memo to staff - as reported by Thurrott - the top bod said Google had validated Microsoft's streaming strategy, which was hinted at during Xbox's E3 2018 showcase and announced as Project xCloud in October of that year.

"We just wrapped up watching the Google announcement of Stadia as team here at GDC. Their announcement is validation of the path we embarked on two years ago," he allegedly wrote.

"Today we saw a big tech competitor enter the gaming market, and frame the necessary ingredients for success as Content, Community and Cloud. There were no big surprises in their announcement although I was impressed by their leveraging of YouTube, the use of Google Assistant and the new WiFi controller.

"But I want get to back to us, there has been really good work to get us to the position where we are poised to compete for 2 billion gamers across the planet. Google went big today and we have a couple of months until E3 when we will go big.

"We have to stay agile and continue to build with our customer at the centre. We have the content, community, cloud team and strategy, and as I’ve been saying for a while, it’s all about execution. This is even more true today."

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.