Valve, the developer behind gaming successes Portal, Half-Life, and more, are considering making their mark in the hardware business with The "Steam Box". According to an article from The Verge, the developer is toying with the idea of creating a set-top console that could compete with the Xbox, PlayStation, and Wii.
Valve's co-founder Gabe Newell told Penny Arcade, "We'd rather hardware people that are good at manufacturing and distributing hardware do [hardware]. We think it's important enough that if that's what we end up having to do, then that's what we end up having to do."
Perhaps they've decided that now is the time that it's important enough to go this route. Unconfirmed sources say that Valve is working on a hardware spec and the associated software that would make up the Steam Box. Sources are saying that meetings were held during CES 2012 to demo a hand-built version of the device.
Allegedly, the Steam Box would include a Core i7 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a NVIDIA GPU. It would be able to run any standard PC title, and it would be a great way to bring Valve's extremely popular digital distribution service Steam in to the living room.
The Verge also reports that the Steam Box may be compatible with a wide variety of USB peripherals, but it will probably ship with a reconfigurable controller. Valve filed a patent for such a controller last year, adding more credibility to the theory.
As GDC, the Game Developers Conference is happening later on this week, we could definitely hear more about the Steam Box there. Otherwise, we'll probably have to wait until E3 in June to find out what Valve is up to.
When we have more information on the alleged console, we'll be sure to let you know. For now, remember that this is all speculative.
Source: The Verge