Phil Harrison, vice president of Google and former head of Stadia, has confirmed he has left the company.
According to a report from Business Insider, two employees familiar with the matter said Harrison quietly left Google around the time the company shut down the short-lived game streaming service after it failed to gain traction in a competitive gaming market. His LinkedIn profile has been updated to say he ended his time with the search engine giant this month.
A veteran of the gaming industry, Harrison joined Google in 2018 after working at Sony for over a decade and three years at Microsoft. From Stadia's announcement at GDC 2019, he championed the platform as the "future of gaming" as it gave players access to their favorite games, including Assassin's Creed Odyssey and Cyberpunk 2077, through Google's cloud service without the need to purchase expensive consoles. He even hosted two Connect streams, where he would announce the games being added to the service in a format similar to Nintendo Direct.
In 2021, as Stadia struggled to attract gamers, Harrison wrote a blog post on The Keyword announcing the closure of Stadia Games and Entertainment (SG&E) and disappeared from the public eye. On September 29, 2022, he announced that Stadia would be shutting down for good this January, and Google began issuing refunds to those who purchased the Stadia controller and games through the Google Play Store.
Where Harrison will head next is currently unknown. Google recently admitted that it didn't do well creating a cloud gaming service on its own via Stadia, but it is now doing better partnering with game companies to support their live-service games on Google Cloud.