Valve, the creators of the game distribution platform, Steam, has said that they are looking into expanding the service into non-gaming related software too. They plan on releasing this non-gaming distribution on September 5th and have said this:
“Many of the launch titles will take advantage of popular Steamworks features, such as easy installation, automatic updating, and the ability to save your work to your personal Steam Cloud space so your files may travel with you. More Software titles will be added in an ongoing fashion following the September 5th launch, and developers will be welcome to submit Software titles via Steam Greenlight.”
While Steam is a fantastic platform for game distribution and playing games, I really wonder what they’re trying to set up here. It sounds like they’re almost headed towards a Xbox Live or iTunes sort of service. At the same time, they’ve created a mobile application that was put on Google Play and has been widely applauded. When I saw this news article I was almost wondering if they were trying to set themselves up for their own sort of “Google Play” or even “Amazing Marketplace.” Except it’d obviously have more of a focus on games, as really that is what their service is about.
But, it really made me wonder if maybe this was a step towards their own Steam Operating System. That’s a bit of a far stretch, I know. Gabe Newell, Founders of Valve, has said numerous times that he does not like Windows 8 and will be slowly moving over to Linux. Not only that, but the company has also expressed interest in creating their own console last year. With rumors of that new console rising, they said they were not currently making one, but were interested in the idea.
If you think about it though, the team that’s making Mozilla Firefox is making their own web-based Operating System for phones, and with Valve taking this step, it could be very well possible that we could see a Steam OS in the future. These are just suspicions of course and are not factual. It just seems that with this new non-gaming software that’s being added to Steam, that they almost want to head in that direction. Of course, I could be entirely wrong and this was just another way to get developers’ software out to the public to somehow get a following. Either way, I think this is a pretty cool direction their taking, whether they make a Steam OS or not.
What do you think of this new move by Steam? Do you think they’re doing the right thing and headed in the right direction or do you think it’s wrong that they are expanding away from their gaming service into other areas too? Heck, would you even agree with me about the possibility of a Steam Operating System? It’d definitely be a interesting concept to see and I bet with Gabe Newell being a former Microsoft vet, it’d be very well done. Who knows though, we’ll just have to see what happens in the future.