Posted on January 9, 2013, CJ Miozzi Gabe Newell Clarifies Steam Box, Not Coming in 2013
Valve’s Gabe Newell has disclosed some new information concerning the Steam Box, ruling out the likelihood that yesterday’s Xi3 hardware announcement pertains specifically to the box.
Speaking with The Verge at CES, Newell explained that he is meeting with different companies about Valve’s hardware plans and has brought a number of prototypes. He added:
“We think that there are pluses and minuses to open systems that could make things a little messier, it’s much more like herding cats, so we try to take the pieces where we’re going to add the best value and then encourage other people to do it. So it tends to mean that a lot of people get involved. We’re not imposing a lot of restrictions on people on how they’re getting involved.”
One such company that has been contracted by Valve to build computer hardware is Xi3, who designed a modular small form factor PC designed with Steam’s Big Picture Mode in mind.
In an email to Engadget, Valve hardware engineer Ben Krasnow corroborated this un-reveal, saying “we have no current plans to announce anything in 2013 [about a hardware box].”
Newell went on to discuss plans for the Steam Box, which will be Linux-based and wide open. He said:
“We’ll come out with our own and we’ll sell it to consumers by ourselves. That’ll be a Linux box, [and] if you want to install Windows you can. We’re not going to make it hard. This is not some locked box by any stretch of the imagination. We also think that a controller that has higher precision and lower latency is another interesting thing to have.”
Some designs for those controllers include touch screens and biometric data. Needless to say, it seems there’s quite a bit of experimentation and development going on at Valve; some exciting news may be coming our way in the future.