If you’re into gaming, chances are pretty damn high you’ve heard of Valve’s plans with both their SteamOS and Steam Machines which Valve hope will push PC’s into the living room and hook up to your big screen TV. Steam Machines will run Valve’s new OS (which is a customized version of Linux) and the whole GUI is designed to be easily navigated using a controller (which Valve are producing too).
Alienware are a little nervous of the sales figures and profitability of Valve’s brainchild, which was made somewhat clear in an interview with with Wall Street Journal. Alienware’s general manager Frank Azor admits that its first Steam Machines will face a tough margin between the cost of manufacturing and their price at retail. “It’s going to be very challenging,” Azor says. “This will absolutely be the least profitable system we ever sell.”
But Frank Azor has since provided clarification by issuing the following statement: “Alienware is very optimistic about PC gaming’s future and its opportunity to extend to the TV. We have been partners with Valve since the inception of the Steam Machine over 2 years ago. Our decision to invest in developing the purpose-built Alienware Steam Machine, pairing it with incredible performance and pricing it as aggressively as possible has everything to do with how much we believe in this vision and want to see it materialize.”
There has certainly been some who’ve been sceptical of Valve’s plans for both their custom OS and for their PC’s. But then again, they’ve around 75 million users who’ve Steam accounts. If you take a look at Steam’s number of users online, often 3 – 6 million users at any one time isn’t uncommon. Steam is certainly loved by PC gamers, despite the recent glut of lower quality and early access titles somewhat causing a stir. The relationship isn’t about to be called off, to many gamer’s it’d be the equivalent of a couple arguing about who is doing the washing up tonight.
Alienware, IBuyPower and other manufacturers are yet to provide solid release dates for their machines. Each machine fluctuates wildly in specs which is a cause for concern. Will this confuse the ‘average’ user who isn’t confident in PC’s? And if so, will seasoned PC users really cough up for these prebuilt systems and instead say “I’ll just build my own PC”. There’s a lot of guides on the internet, and frankly speaking building your own is the best way to go in many situations.
If you’d like to try out SteamOS on your very own system, take a look at our guide!