For most of the service's first year, Stadia players were frustrated by their inability to share games with family members. If you and your kids or spouse (or roommates, or whoever) wanted to play the same game with more than one save file, you had to buy multiple copies. But no more! Earlier this month, Google finally relented and enabled family sharing on Stadia. Here's how to set it up.
Stadia's nearly a year old, but we're still only just starting to see Google deliver on what the service could be; features expected near launch like Google Assistant integration and Crowd Choice weren't available until recent months. Now, one of the most hotly-anticipated features is finally available: Starting today, you're able to share your game library with members of your Google family group.
After launching in the US, Google Play Family Library started expanding and is now available in over 20 countries. The official list doesn't mention India, but if you live there, you may start seeing the Family option pop up in your Play Store. For some, signing up for it and making purchases on the account is a smooth process, for others though, an error might show up. The feature could be in its early stages of rollout, or it's possible someone pulled the plug very prematurely.
Google set loose a beta update to its namesake app this weekend, but like most versions, there's not much to see after updating. The most interesting things are only visible through the lens of a teardown, although they're mostly minor notes about topics we already know about or expect to be coming. Nevertheless, we can look forward to a new app shortcut to launch Assistant, car-specific Assistant settings, a couple of name changes, and more.
Over the weekend, many of you tipped us telling us you were surprised when you launched Google Play Music and noticed a banner saying you're now eligible for the family plan and that also gives you access to the Google Play family library.
According to Google's support pages and the tips we've received, it looks like the countries that now have access to both features are these 9:
Spotify has offered its Premium for Family plan for some time now, and in May the price was dropped to $14.99 a month. Now Spotify is expanding availability to the land up north, at the same $14.99/month pricing as the United States.
If you're unfamiliar, Spotify Premium is $9.99/month for a single person. For about $5 more every month, Spotify Premium for Family allows you to have up to six individual accounts, each with all of the features the normal Premium includes. More information is available at the dedicated Family page, and you can even upgrade your existing Spotify account to keep your playlists.
After nearly a year of rumors, teardowns, a vague announcement, and a false start, Google Play's Family Library is finally going live today. It will begin rolling out over the next few days to users in Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Other countries will surely join the list in time, but those will be the first. Family Library will allow up to six family members to share purchased content with each other without paying for additional copies.
We knew it was coming eventually, but just before the Google I/O keynote began, Google updated its developer documentation with more details about Family Library. Most important, we have a launch date of sorts: July 2nd. That date marks when app purchases will be shared in the Family Library by default unless the developer opts out.
For those who aren't familiar, Family Library will be a way for trusted family members to share Play Store purchases among one another. We have seen bits and pieces popping up in our APK teardowns for a while now. When it comes to video purchases, for instance, we can tell that you will be restricted to streaming the same title on only one device at a time.
A few days ago, Google announced newly revised icons for its Play-branded apps. Newsstand was the first to emerge with the updated look, but aside from very minor tweaks to a few of the icons inside the app, there wasn't anything significant to be seen. The Play Movies & TV app received a pretty similar update, again with a few minimal icon changes and the new launcher icon, but there's actually something more interesting in the teardown: new rules about streaming paid content when it's shared in the family library.
After Google announced the new icons, I insisted that AP should not post about the individual updates if those were the only changes worth pointing out.