Steam OS


Steam OS

The first of 3 (2) major announcements from Valve has been released.

Steam OS is a Linux based system built for playing games. The press release specifies this OS is optimized for Steam and gaming alike. It will also be free to any who wish to make their own gaming centric Steam box. The devs at Valve have been working with game developers to ensure that games run at the highest quality through Steam OS.

One of the prime features talked about in the press release is the usefulness of Steam OS in the living room. You’ll get all of your favorite Steam features on your living room based machine. Sounds nifty! Valve also expresses how the “openness” of the system will change gaming going forward. Primarily, the ability for developers to make changes to the games, to update and directly talk with the users, and the ability for users to swap out pieces of hardware as they see fit.

Valve is also adding some new features to Steam to help support Steam OS. First is In-Home Streaming, the ability to stream your Steam games from your PC to your Steam OS enabled device as long as you’re on the same network. Many of the new consoles are seeing the usefulness of this feature in their design, and Valve has as well. No need to create a top of the line Steam OS box for your living room, just stream the games from your gaming PC to your living room TV. They’re also working on TV, Audio, and Movie support. Most likely in the form of Netflix, Pandora, and other streaming services. Valve will also be enabling family sharing, or the ability to let others play the games you have purchased. This was a feature that stood out on Xbox One, but has since been removed after the backlash of the consoles announcements. And lastly, they’re adding Family Options. Essentially different profiles so you can save your setting the way you want, while dad saves his setting the way he wants.

steamos_livingroom

The best news about the OS is that it will be free to download for everyone forever. So there’s no need for you to run out and grab a $500 console with the OS built in. Instead you can take your old PC, format that HDD, and install Steam OS(or dual boot). And voila, you have yourself a fancy Steam Box for your living room.

Overall this sounds like a solid start for the new Steam Box console. Like I said Valve is teasing 3 announcements, the second will most likely be the actual Steam Box console. As for the 3rd announcement? I wouldn’t expect much. Valve don’t do 3s.

The second announcement should be released on 9/25/13 at noon EST. To see the official press release check the Steam Living Room page. Tell us what you think about the upcoming announcement(s) in the comments below!

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