Valve just announced a new operating system called SteamOS; a step forward in Valve’s plan to bring home gaming forward towards the “Big Picture.”
The Linux based operating system will allow players to not only stream their games, but also stream movies and listen to music all from the comfort of the couch in their living room. This move makes a whole lot of sense especially in regards to their recent announcement of bringing family sharing to Steam. Players could each have their own accounts and be able to play separately from different points in the home. As it stands, only Linux based games will be playable through SteamOS, but this could change in the near future as more and more players press forward from the limitations of a computer screen.
Valve is presenting SteamOS as a full circle community-building piece of hardware. They state, “Steam users are what makes gaming on Steam Fun.” They go on to promote the inclusive aspects of the new hardware and the ability for user created content to be more readily available to home players.
Additionally, SteamOS offers the opportunity for players and developers to work hand in hand through content creation. A representative stated that, “Gamers are empowered to join in the creation of the games they love. SteamOS will continue to evolve, but will remain an environment designed to foster these kinds of innovation.” Content creators will be able to connect directly to customers and users will have the opportunity to adjust and change any part of the software or hardware they want. This kind of openness has become an expectation of Steam and Valve has stayed true to their colors.
The benefit of SteamOS is that it combines a number of different technologies into one fluid device. In essence, this new hardware could actively replace your Roku, Apple TV, and gaming console as Steam offers a multitude of services that come under the “Living Room” umbrella. Movies, music, and gaming, are all combined to create a completely interactive and user-friendly experience.
Valve has long prided themselves on the opportunity for community driven gaming and this new operating system accomplishes their goals. Over the last few years, Valve has been working diligently to change the meaning of home gaming. They decided that the best mode of operation was to develop their own operating system with their needs specifically in mind.
No word yet on the venue through which this OS will play, but rumors of the Steam Box have been circling the web and now seems like the perfect opportunity to reveal said device.
Valve has two more announcements coming this week. The next will take place Wednesday, September 25th. This could when they announce their own “console,” The Steam Box.
For more information and a specific break down of the services offered, check out the website here.