Steam Machine No Longer Mystery Machine

The big news, Steam’s latest announcement is Beta for Steam Machines.  Friend of the site Indiehaven sums it up well.

Well we’ve got one more Steam Announcement coming, but I wanted to take a look at the Progeek and Musehacker applications of what’s going on.

Here are my takes:

  • First of all this is a definite strategy to spread Steam all over.  It’s own console, it can be installed.  Steam just got itself even more mindshare and install share.  This is not a surprise with the way they’ve been evolving – remember they have even more than games.
  • Secondly, this is a disruptive strategy, the kind of strategy that may have a plan, but is also to make people go “what the hell do we do now?”  They just put everyone else on notice.
  • Third, they just owned the “unsure” market.  That old machine you’re not sure what to do with, that HTPC that could be done in various ways, the just gave you an answer.
  • Fourth, they also may own the pickup market.  Now you can take an old system and turn it into something else – a Linux based game and media machine.
  • Fifth, this is a challenge to everyone, and I see some possibility that other companies have to deal with.  You can’t corner Steam or just not allow them on your devices, but they’re also stepping on your territory.  Steam is now a fact of life.
  • Sixth, as this is Linux-based, who knows what they can get from other install bases (like Android?).
  • Seventh, they just grabbed the news cycle.  They’ll grab it again when the Machine comes out, and they’ll grab it next holiday.
  • They just cozied up to many a manufacturer.

This is going to be big and interesting.  Work in gaming, you must pay attention, period.  Also start learning Linux.

– Steven “Steam Power” Savage