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Valve introduces SteamOS for living room computers

Valve's biggest step into the living room so far is SteamOS, a Linux-based operating system made to be used on televisions. The new system will be free to download and install on any machine "soon" and will be compatible with hundreds of games at launch, Valve revealed on its product page.

Valve didn't specify what games will run on SteamOS at launch, but the page shows images of Metro: Last Light, Trine 2, Crusader Kings 2, Total War: Rome 2, and Football Manager 2013. Non-compatible games can still be streamed from a PC or Mac running Steam on the same home network.

Since SteamOS is being built from the ground up as a gaming system, users can expect "significant performance increases in graphics processing" as well as better audio performance and reduced input latency. Developers are already taking advantage of the streamlined system for new releases, Valve said.

It isn't just for games, however. Valve's working with several media services to bring music, TV, and movie streaming to Steam and SteamOS. With a SteamBox reveal expected later this week, Valve could soon give media streaming set-top boxes a run for their money.

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16 comments

  • TokenGamesRadarFurry - September 23, 2013 2:17 p.m.

    Oh sweet gamey Jebus yes. 2014 can't come soon enough.
  • ObliqueZombie - September 23, 2013 1:29 p.m.

    So this is a whole new OS? Will it override Windows
  • ObliqueZombie - September 23, 2013 1:31 p.m.

    Pardon me... Will it replace Windows, and if so, what does that mean for all my current data? Is this solely for streaming, or will this be for big desktops, too? If this is what I think it is, this could make me fall in love with PC Gaming all over again.
  • nai1210 - September 23, 2013 4:18 p.m.

    I think you would be able to install this and still have window's installed,so you could have a dual booting system,if your playing games boot up steam os,if your doing anything else just boot up window's or at least thats the way i think and hope it will work.
  • rainn'sgaydar - September 23, 2013 12:18 p.m.

    So, SteamBox announcement Wednesday, Half-Life 3 announcement Friday, yeah? In a perfect world...
  • PlainLikeVanilla - September 23, 2013 11:21 a.m.

    So what does this actually do? How is this different than plugging my PC into my TV?
  • brickman409 - September 23, 2013 11:29 a.m.

    It's an operating system for your PC. Kind of like Windows or Linux. Except this is made just for games, so it's much more efficient and utilizes your PC's hardware better.
  • PlainLikeVanilla - September 23, 2013 11:41 a.m.

    So it allows you to push your hardware further? So what audience would this be for, people with lower end setups?
  • brickman409 - September 23, 2013 6:25 p.m.

    yeah pretty much. I think what Valve is planning on doing is to make and sell cheap gaming PC's that run this new OS. It would probably be sold at the same price point as the xbox one and PS4 and will outperform both consoles. Also they mentioned that they will allow other hardware manufactures to use Steam OS, so I would expect to see Steamboxes also being made by companies other than Valve.
  • Relzen - September 24, 2013 9:28 a.m.

    Steam OS is cool but a Steambox is a horrible idea. If its priced competitively with PS4 and the Xbone you will just be getting a shitty 400$ PC which isn't going to do anything better then a console unless all the games are streamed.
  • TheSplund - September 24, 2013 1:19 a.m.

    @PlainLikeVanilla - I doubt if it will 'push' your hardware further, but more likely it will allow your hardware to perform more efficiently (ie it might mean that your hardware performs the same with less pushing)
  • slimjim441 - September 23, 2013 12:56 p.m.

    Would this allow a mac user to run formerly 'PC only' games via SteamOS?
  • brickman409 - September 23, 2013 6:18 p.m.

    I think so, we'll have to wait until it comes out to get all the details, but it sounds like it definitely could.
  • CrashmanX - September 23, 2013 11:41 a.m.

    Think of it sorta like installing a console OS to your PC. It's MADE for gaming. It'll make your games run SIGNIFICANTLY better but won't do everything your PC does.
  • StrayGator - September 23, 2013 11:14 a.m.

    Cool. now implement well-equipped browser, office suite, media players etc. and buh-bye windows.
  • CrashmanX - September 23, 2013 11:42 a.m.

    Given that it's running off of a Linux base, you can do that. You'd be able to install specific things like OpenOffice and VLC player.

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