There were rumors about a hand held gaming PC that will be released by Valve. Now, that device was just announced. They call it Steam Deck.
Steam Deck features a 7-inch touch-enabled HD+ IPS LCD with a 60Hz refresh rate, and is powered by a custom AMD APU that utilizes a 4-core 8-thread CPU and a GPU that packs 8 RDNA compute units. You also get 16GB of LPDDR5 RAM, and a choice of either 64GB, 256GB, or 512GB of storage. The latter two boasts NVMe SSDs, and all three will support a microSD card.
Like the handheld from another brand, which recently had quite an underwhelming new variant, this one can also be used with an external display, a mouse, and a keyboard. Oh, and it’s got Bluetooth 5 in addition to dual-band Wi-Fi (802.11ac) There will be an official dock, but you can also use any third-party USB-C adapter.
As for the controls, you get capacitive sticks with a small trackpad below, as well as four extra buttons at the back that you can remap depending on the game you’re playing.
Steam Deck runs SteamOS 3.0 and uses Proton to run games designed for Windows. It also uses a custom version of the Steam store that gives access to your library of games, and lets you browse and purchase games. You’ll be able to continue where you left off on your PC, as the device supports cloud saves.
You get a USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 port, and when its used with an external display, Steam Deck supports 8K 60Hz or 4K 120Hz via DisplayPort 1.4 Alt-mode. Its 40Wh battery delivers anywhere from 8 hours to 2 hours of uptime depending on the games you’ll play, and it comes with a 45W USB-C PD charger.
For the price, it’s $399 for the 64GB variant, then it’s $529 and $649 for the 256GB and 512GB models, respectively. It is set to launch some time this year, and will be sold via a reservation pre-order system.
It will be interesting to see how well the Steam Deck performs, and those who want proper horsepower on a handheld, looks like the time has come. Oh, and this could also be the answer for those who were disappointed by that “upgrade.”
At the time of writing, the device isn’t available for reservation for PH. You may check out the reservation page here.
Emman has been writing technical and feature articles since 2010. Prior to this, he became one of the instructors at Asia Pacific College in 2008, and eventually landed a job as Business Analyst and Technical Writer at Integrated Open Source Solutions for almost 3 years.