Gabe Newell confirms Linux-based Valve hardware still alive

UPDATE: Valve to make two other announcements next week.

UPDATE: Valve has revealed that it's planning three announcements next week. There's even a countdown site and everything. This Linux-based hardware is one, but that doesn't account for the other two.

"The Steam universe is expanding in 2014," the company cryptically teased. "Last year, we shipped a software feature called Big Picture, a user-interface tailored for televisions and gamepads. This year we've been working on even more ways to connect the dots for customers who want Steam in the living-room. Soon, we'll be adding you to our design process, so that you can help us shape the future of Steam."

What else could Valve be planning?

Original Story: Gabe Newell has confirmed that Valve's hardware is still alive, and revealed plans to provide more information on it next week.

Speaking at LinuxCon in New Orleans yesterday (video below), Newell said Valve will next week discuss how it intends to bring open source platform Linux into the living room with its own hardware.

During his presentation, Newell described Linux as "the future of gaming" - something Valve became convinced of a number of years ago.

Having released a Linux client for Steam in February this year, and with Steam's living room-focused Big Picture mode out in the wild, Newell said "our next step is now on the hardware side".

"There are sets of issues to making sure whatever platform you have works well in a living room environment," he said. "There are thermal issues and sound issues, but there also a bunch of input issues. So the next step in our contribution to this [the promotion of Linux for gaming] is to release some work we've done on the hardware side.

"None of the proprietary closed platforms are going to be able to provide that grand unification between mobile, the living room and the desktop," he added.

"Next week we're going to be rolling out more information about how we get there and what are the hardware opportunities we see for bringing Linux into the living room, and potentially pointing further down the road to how we can get it even more unified in mobile."

Valve has been working for some time now on what has been dubbed the Steam Box, but the Seattle-based company has been quiet on it since March 2013.

Then, Newell told the BBC that Valve was working with partners to "nail down how fast we can make it", with a prototype expected by July.

That provisional deadline has been and gone. In March, Valve was still mulling over the controller, and was considering adding sensors to determine the player's body state.

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