by Josh Hamel
Valve’s Gabe Newell has finally confirmed the company is looking to directly compete with consoles with living room PCs.
“I think in general that most customers and most developers are gonna find that [the PC is] a better environment for them. ‘Cause they won’t have to split the world into thinking about ‘why are my friends in the living room, why are my video sources in the living room different from everyone else?’ So in a sense we hopefully are gonna unify those environments,” said Newell in an interview with Kotaku after the VGAs.
Newell gave just a hint at what the company is going to do with a PC designed for the living room.
“Well certainly our hardware will be a very controlled environment. If you want more flexibility, you can always buy a more general purpose PC. For people who want a more turnkey solution, that’s what some people are really gonna want for their living room,” said Newell.
This could mean the Steam Box boots directly into Steam’s Big Picture Mode or that the company will control standardized hardware with specific upgrades the user can make to the machine.
Valve could release living room PC packages as soon as next year, according to Newell.
Many of the moves the company has made in the past few months have lead to this reveal, including Valve’s support of Linux and Big Picture.
Between this announcement from Valve, a new console from Microsoft – and possibly Sony – expected next year, the recently released Wii U and the possibility of any dark horse companies like Apple deciding to market their own console, the hardware market is as crowded as ever for the next-generation.