In a recent interview, Valve co-founder and managing director Gabe Newell revealed that he expects to see custom PCs running Steam on living room television screens as early as next year, and that these PCs will be competing with next-gen consoles from Sony and Microsoft.
Speaking with Kotaku, Newell said that Valve would be looking into developing these custom PC packages, though other PC manufacturers will be offering their own versions as well.
“I think in general that most customers and most developers are gonna find that [the PC is] a better environment for them,” Newell said. “Cause they won’t have to split the world into thinking about ’why are my friends in the living room, why are my video sources in the living room different from everyone else?’ So in a sense we hopefully are gonna unify those environments.”
“Certainly our hardware will be a very controlled environment,” he continued. “If you want more flexibility, you can always buy a more general purpose PC. For people who want a more turnkey solution, that’s what some people are really gonna want for their living room.”
December 3rd saw the official launch of Steam’s Big Picture, giving players a new interface to help them play games on their TV. There have also been rumors swirling of a “Steam Box” – a set-top box console designed for the TV. Could these living-room PCs be the precursor to a Steam-powered console? I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.