Feeds

No sign of Half-Life 3 but how about FOURTEEN Steam Machine makers?

If you fancy a $6,000 Linux-powered games console, insert coin

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

CES 2014 Valve has used the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas to reveal more than a dozen hardware partners that have signed on to build gaming consoles based on its SteamOS gaming platform.

The companies that will market the first generation of Steam Machines include Alienware, Alternate, CyberPowerPC, Digital Storm, Falcon Northwest, GigaByte, iBuyPower, Maingear, Materiel.net, Next Spa, Origin PC, Scan, Webhallen, and Zotac.

The devices they have designed will arrive in a variety of form factors and configurations, ranging from compact cubes to tricked-out towers bedizened with bling.

"With over 3,000 games and more than 65 million gamers on Steam, it's important to offer gamers a variety of Steam Machines that allow them to select what makes the most sense for them," Valve CEO Gabe Newell said in a canned statement.

The machines will sell at a wide range of price points, too. On the low end, a console from CyberPowerPC featuring an AMD CPU and graphics, 8GB of RAM, and 500GB of storage is expected to retail for around $499. A deluxe custom rig from Falcon Northwest that's stuffed with 16GB of RAM and 6TB of disk space, on the other hand, could set you back as much as $6,000.

Alienware Steam Machine

This attractive-looking model from Alienware is just one of at least 14 Steam Machines to debut this year

Because SteamOS is an open, Linux-powered platform and Steam Machines are essentially PCs, the devices will ship with various processors, motherboards, and graphics chips. Valve itself has built prototype Steam Machines with a variety of hardware.

You can see a complete breakdown of the first wave of Steam Machines and their expected configurations in Valve's CES 2014 press brochure, available here [PDF].

It was not immediately clear which of the first-generation consoles will bundle Valve's ambitious custom-designed gaming controller, if any. In a rare press conference appearance on Monday, Newell said that Valve – which made its name with the Half-Life series – will sell its controller separately, but that hardware makers are also free to design their own controllers for their Steam Machines.

What all of the devices will share in common is they all should be able to download and play any of the roughly 250 SteamOS-compatible games now available in Valve's online store.

Asked how Valve plans to compete with the likes of Microsoft's new Xbox One, Newell observed that while Redmond claims to have sold 3 million Xbox One units since the console's launch, Steam has 65 million users. He added that with the holidays now behind it, Valve has seen 62 per cent year-on-year revenue growth.

What Valve and its hardware partners couldn't say, however, was just when the first wave of Steam Machines will reach the market. "Rather than talking to me, go talk to the hardware manufacturers," Newell said. But beyond assuring us that the devices will ship "later this year," details remain scant. ®

Application security programs and practises

More from The Register

next story
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
For Lenovo US, 8-inch Windows tablets are DEAD – long live 8-inch Windows tablets
Reports it's killing off smaller slabs are greatly exaggerated
Microsoft unsheathes cheap Android-killer: Behold, the Lumia 530
Say it with us: I'm King of the Landfill-ill-ill-ill
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Seventh-gen SPARC silicon will accelerate Oracle databases
Uncle Larry's mutually-optimised stack to become clearer in August
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Apple orders huge MOUNTAIN of 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s
Bigger, harder trouser bulges foretold for fanbois
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.