Google didn’t release its streaming service for the Onyx Boox Max 3, and yet Danish student Sebastian Ørsted felt the need to get Stadia up and running on the $859 e-reader.
Stadia can’t be played on an iPhone or third-party Android smartphone yet, but Danish student Sebastian Ørsted figured out how to get Google’s streaming service on an e-reader without any system-level modifications.
Take a look at the Onyx Boox Max 3. It appears as an $859 e-reader on the outside, but this product doubles as a tablet. In fact, it runs a complete version of Android. Ørsted did some experimenting, and now we’re able to see Stadia running on an Android tablet that features an e-ink display. While not an ideal experience, Stadia doesn’t run all that bad considering the limited hardware pushing its cloud gaming capabilities.
Onyx designed its e-ink display with an enhanced mode. Known as X-Mode, the Boox Max 3 can significantly increase the e-ink display’s refresh rate for animated content. Ørsted turned on X-Mode, which in turn meant Bungie’s Destiny 2 wasn’t as sluggish as expected. The lag remained somewhere between 500 and 1,000 milliseconds the entire time.
Some amount of lag might not fall on the e-ink display, though. Ørsted tested Stadia at Aarhus University, and the school’s Wi-Fi network could’ve added stuttering. Still, we highly recommend sticking with Stadia on traditional platforms such as a Pixel phone or the Chrome web browser.
Watch the full video here, courtesy of Ørsted:
“So this setup would obviously be useless for any practical video game experience. But as a tech demonstration, I think it’s really cool that it works at all,” Ørsted told Vice in an email. “I was surprised, myself, at how well it suddenly went.”
Interested in Stadia? Sign up for a Stadia Pro membership, and then open the dedicated app on a supported platform. Currently, Stadia will run on recent Pixel phones, the Chrome web browser, and Google’s Chromecast Ultra. Other platforms and devices will be added in the months ahead. So be patient, and definitely avoid purchasing an $859 e-reader that’s not made for Stadia to begin with.