One of the most glaring omissions of the Stadia app for Android may soon be fixed as a Google support document details how voice chat will — and won’t — work.

Update: Voice chat has finally arrived to Stadia for Android.

For many months now, our APK Insight team has been watching the development of voice chat in the Stadia app, including the app being registered for Android’s “Microphone” permission. Despite that, nothing in the app has indicated when voice chat would actually launch. For each of Stadia’s other platforms — Chromecast Ultra, Android TV, and Web — voice and party chat were available from day one.

In the latest update to Stadia, version 3.36 — which our team is actively digging into — there’s a newly added link to a Google Support page. The link leads to a particular section of a long-existing page that explains the many devices and controllers you can use to play Stadia games.

However, the section in question currently reads as though in-game voice chat should be presently available on Stadia for Android.

When you connect your Stadia Controller to your Android mobile device, or link to it wirelessly, you’ll be able to hear and respond to in-game voice chat when you connect a headset with microphone to your controller. You can also use Bluetooth or a USB cable to connect a headset to your Android mobile device. Party chat support on Android is coming soon.

From what we could find, the page was updated to include the new text sometime in late June. Previously, it spelled out that voice chat was not available in any form on Stadia’s Android app.

When you connect your Stadia Controller to your Android mobile device, or link to your device wirelessly, you’ll be able to hear voice chat when you connect a headset to your phone, but you won’t be able to speak to others with your mobile device or headset.

It’s not clear why this change was made, as we’ve been thus far unable to get voice chat working on Stadia for Android. It seems more likely that the support page was updated prematurely, pointing to the feature launching in the very near future. This seems especially likely considering a direct link was included in the latest Stadia app update.

According to a Google representative, voice chat has not rolled out to Stadia for Android, and the support page should be changed back shortly.


Update 9/29: Just a few days after the feature was confirmed to not be available, players have begun noticing that Stadia now supports in-game chat on Android. It starts with an in-app notice of “Headset connected.” Once you start up a game, you’re then informed that game chat is available, with a simple “Join” button available. Or you can use Stadia’s in-game settings menu to switch who you’re talking to, between “Game chat” and “None right now” just like other Stadia platforms.

 

Stadia’s headset options on Android are just as varied as other platforms, with the Stadia Controller’s headset port working fully, along with options to use Bluetooth headphones connected to your phone. Though, given the limitations of audio quality when using the mic, along with the delays inherent to Bluetooth, you’ll likely want to stick to a wired headset when playing games on Stadia.


Strangely, the Android app will still not offer a full Stadia experience, as the voice capabilities will be limited to in-game chat systems. The party chat system, which offers conversations that are both private and game-independent, is still explicitly mentioned as “coming soon.”

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