What They Are and What Do They Do
Back in Sept. 2013, Steam announced its plans for a whole new type of gaming console, one that would reign supreme and blur the lines between home consoles and gaming PCs. Even though Steam Machines have been talked about for two and a half years, many people don’t know much about the little PC/ console hybrids. So let’s give you the run-down.
Steam Machines are PCs in tiny console form. They run on something called Steam OS, a Linux-based operating system that allows gamers to play PC games in their living room. The main purpose of the machines is to run Steam and play games that you buy from the Steam Store. However, the Steam OS allows you to install new software or content whenever you want as long as it runs on Linux.
Valve itself does note however, that Steam OS shouldn’t be something you replace your current PCs operating system with. The OS was built from the ground up for a living room experience and that’s exactly what the Steam Machines are for. Rather than moving your big desktop PC down into your living room to play a game when friends, Steam Machines are supposed to be the convenient way to play PC games anywhere your house. They also came with a Steam controller to save you from having to rest your keyboard and mouse somewhere on the sofa.