Will no longer be locked to Pixel phones.
Stadia Samsung Galaxy phones

Since Stadia's launch, the only customers that could stream their games directly to their phones were those that owned Pixel devices. Beginning on February 20, Google will finally expand the mobile support for Stadia to include 19 additional phones that don't fall under the Stadia umbrella. The expanded roster of Android phones will include devices made by Samsung, Razer, and ASUS.

For those who don't know, Pixel phones are the devices that Google creates as a first-party device. Google Pixels are similar to things like the Galaxy lineup from Samsung or iPhones from Apple. In typical Google fashion, they severely limited the reach of their service by limiting it to working only on Pixel 2, 3, and 4 devices for months following the service's launch. That is assuming you also ignore how access to Stadia streaming is still locked behind a paywall.

Fortunately, this is all about to change very shortly. On February 20, Google is opening up the number of Android powered devices that Stadia will be able to run on. These devices include a wide range of Samsung devices, a couple of Razer devices, and a couple of ASUS devices. Given that Stadia is merely a streaming service, it is still a bit perplexing as to why this is not being made more readily available, but I assume that Google knows best in this situation.

These are the new devices being added on February 20th:
  • Samsung Galaxy S8
  • Samsung Galaxy S8+
  • Samsung Galaxy S8 Active
  • Samsung Galaxy Note8
  • Samsung Galaxy S9
  • Samsung Galaxy S9+
  • Samsung Galaxy Note9
  • Samsung Galaxy S10
  • Samsung Galaxy S10E
  • Samsung Galaxy S10+
  • Samsung Galaxy Note10
  • Samsung Galaxy Note10+
  • Samsung Galaxy S20
  • Samsung Galaxy S20+
  • Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra
  • Razer Phone
  • Razer Phone 2
  • ASUS ROG Phone
  • ASUS ROG Phone II
These devices join the Pixel 2, Pixel 3, and Pixel 4 phones. These are all in addition to the fact that you can use Stadia on your TV, provided you own and use a Google Chromecast Ultra.

As for the free release of Stadia? Well, that's unfortunately still a little ways away. According to a recent Protocol interview with Google's Phil Harrison, the free release of Stadia is coming in the next "few months." This isn't exactly the most promising of statements there given that Stadia launched into a paid-only release on November 19, 2019. Since then, the actual movement to deliver the promised service has been slow, even by Google's standards. By the time the free service is actually released, will there be anybody that still cares beyond a passing curiosity?

Today's announcement is a bit of a bright spot in what has otherwise been a rough couple of months for Stadia. This includes being considered a "monumental flop" just one month after release. It probably also doesn't particularly help matters that Nvidia's own streaming service, GeForce Now, just recently left beta into a public release in early February. Not only did GeForce Now get released, but it did so with a completely free streaming tier and an optional premium "Founder" tier that will run you just $5 a month for a limited time. In comparison, Stadia's premium subscription service is $9.99 (USD) per month.