Google’s started refunding Stadia hardware — what you need to know

Google Stadia
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Back at the end of October, it was announced that Google Stadia would be shutting down — joining a long list of products and services Google has killed off over the years. Google announced that all Stadia hardware and software purchases would be refunded, a process that has now started happening.

Yesterday Google announced that it was starting to process refunds for all Stadia hardware purchased from the Google Store. Refunds on games, add-on content which were made through the Stadia store, began in early November. Google is expecting all the refunds to be completed by January 18, 2023 — the day Stadia servers are due to go offline.

How to get your Google Stadia refund

The good news is that Google Stadia refunds are set to process automatically. Google will be emailing users when their refunds are processed, which will return to your original payment method within 10 to 15 days. 

If your payment method has changed, such as if your credit card expired or got cancelled, Google will try anyway since some banks and financial institutions will be able to accept them anyway. If it doesn’t work Google will send you an email on how to proceed and set up an alternate refund method.

In some extreme instances you may need to contact your bank, or sign up for an account with Payoneer — a third party service Google has partnered with. More details are available on Google’s Stadia Refund FAQ page, though the most important thing to remember is that you won’t need to do anything unless Google says so.

Google has emphasized that this process will take time, and contacting customer support isn't going to speed the process along.

What Stadia purchase is Google refunding?

While Google can’t preserve your save file, and ensure the time you invested in Stadia games isn’t lost, it will be offering refunds on most Stadia-related purchases. Provided that they were purchased through the Google Store. Any Stadia hardware purchased elsewhere, such as Best Buy, will not be eligible for a refund.

The majority of Stadia hardware will be refunded, including the Stadia controller, Founder’s Edition, Premiere Edition as well as Play and Watch with Google TV packages. That hardware doesn’t have to be returned, though Google notes proof of the device may be required in some cases. The Power Support CLAW, which added a phone holder to the Stadia controller, is not eligible for refund.

All games and add-ons are also going to be refunded, assuming they were purchased from the Stadia store. Google has also promised it will refund any in-game currency purchased through the Stadia Store. All pre-orders have been cancelled, and you won’t be charged for them. If you have been charged already, those purchases will be refunded the same way.

The one thing that definitely isn’t being refunded is Stadia Pro subscription fees. The only exception is a Stadia Pro subscription that was billed after September 29, 2022. That will be refunded alongside any other purchases you made. Stadia Pro access will be available to existing subscribers, free of charge, until January 18.

Tom Pritchard
UK Phones Editor

Tom is the Tom's Guide's UK Phones Editor, tackling the latest smartphone news and vocally expressing his opinions about upcoming features or changes. It's long way from his days as editor of Gizmodo UK, when pretty much everything was on the table. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining about how terrible his Smart TV is.