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Valve Announce SteamOS


Valve have announced their very own Steam operating system, based on Linux. Those of you that have used Linux will know one of its biggest flaws – one that has been really improved upon in the last few years – is its lack of gaming support, and Valve hope to change that. By having the openness of Linux and the ease-of-use of Steam, SteamOS hopes to be a fun, free alternative to current operating systems in widespread use.

From the announcement page:

As we’ve been working on bringing Steam to the living room, we’ve come to the conclusion that the environment best suited to delivering value to customers is an operating system built around Steam itself. SteamOS combines the rock-solid architecture of Linux with a gaming experience built for the big screen. It will be available soon as a free stand-alone operating system for living room machines.

While hundreds of games will work natively in SteamOS, those that don’t will be playable via in-home streaming. While the only advantage to this over just playing on your current set-up is that you can play without moving hardware, it’s definitely a more than welcome feature. It means more time gaming and less time mucking about.

Other important features include integration with several popular streaming services (rumours point to at least Netflix and Spotify, although those are only rumours), parental controls and family sharing. Some of these features will make their way to the traditional Steam UI over time.

You can read more about SteamOS over at the official reveal page. More information about availability and compatibility will be revealed over the coming weeks and months.


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Article By

Mat Growcott has been a long-time member of the gaming press. He's written two books and a web series, and doesn't have nearly enough time to play the games he writes about.

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