Valve continues its push into hardware, as the company has announced that it plans to release a new gadget later this year that will let Steam users stream games from their PCs to any room in the house.
Valve says the new gadget, which it’s calling the Steam Link, will sell for $49 when it arrives in November. This puts it at half the price of the Razer Forge TV, another mini-set-top box meant to stream high-end PC games. The box will work with Windows, Mac, Linux, and the upcoming Steam Machines, the line of console-like PCs that resulted in last year’s Alienware Alpha and other miniature gaming PCs based on Windows when Valve wasn’t quite ready to go with Steam OS. The device seems intended to sit in the living room, with a max 1080p output at 60 Hz.
The announcement follows the unveiling of the HTC Vive, a virtual reality headset based on the research Valve’s been doing semi-privately over the last several years. After what seemed like forever without news regarding Valve’s hardware (including its novel controller, which Valve announced will also arrive in November), Valve is showing that it’s taking a multi-faceted approach to hardware. It’s working to provide value to hard-core gamers who already have their own PCs, as well as to those who want the wide selection and graphical fidelity offered by PCs but prefer the convenient console form factor.