Editor’s take: The Steam Deck is barely a week old at this point but that isn’t stopping Valve from peering through the windshield rather than the rearview with regard to plans for revisions of the handheld gaming computer. While we don’t know Valve’s anticipated lifespan for the first generation device, it’s probably safe to assume that it’ll be the top dog for at least a couple of years.
In a recent interview with Edge magazine (paywalled, via ComicBook), Valve boss Gabe Newell said one of their main concerns with the Steam Deck was pricing. “We thought the entry price was going to be the critical factor but it turns out that far and away the most popular SKU is the most expensive one,” Newell noted.
It’s an example of Valve being a bit surprised by what customers are telling them. “They’re basically saying, ‘We would like an even more expensive version of this’, in terms of horsepower capabilities or whatever,” he added.
The early feedback is already helping shape Valve’s thinking for Steam Deck 2.
A more powerful handheld that isn’t hamstrung by cost concerns could bring new functionality to the table. One example Newell touched on is support for virtual reality. According to the report, Newell believes a follow-up Steam Deck could allow users to tether VR headsets to the device to play supported games virtually anywhere.
Talk of a successor shouldn’t have early adopters or prospective purchasers feeling any buyer’s remorse. Valve still has plenty of early reservations to fill, and current expected order availability is listed as beyond Q2 2022. Growing pains should also keep Valve busy over the coming months, as will checking compatibility against the Steam back catalog.