Valve Steam Deck is a portable gaming PC running Linux-based SteamOS which can run Windows 11 OS as well

Valve Steam Deck Handheld Portable Gaming Console SteamOS Linux Windows
Powerful, portable Linux-based PC with gaming-optimized hardware and software. Pic credit: Valve Software

Valve Steam Deck, previously rumored to be called SteamPal, is a powerful handheld gaming console that will compete directly against Nintendo Switch. The portable personal computer runs on a custom version of SteamOS and can easily play all Steam games.

The Steam Deck is a surprisingly wide and hefty handled PC that functions as a portable gaming console. AMD ZEN 2 CPU with four cores and eight threads working with the latest RDNA 2 integrated graphics and 16GB DDR5 RAM claim to offer console-quality, immersive, and smooth gameplay.

Valve Steam Deck gaming features:

The Valve Steam Deck is essentially a decently powered computer that runs a custom SteamOS 3.0, which is basically a tweaked edition of Arch Linux. Valve claims owners can run all of their games on the Steam Deck.

The SteamOS will use Proton as a compatibility layer. This allows Valve to offer Windows-based games compatibility without developers specifically porting them for the Steam Deck.

The portable gaming console has a custom version of the Steam store that lets gamers just log in and jump right into their Steam library. Users can also browse and purchase games inside the Steam store.

Steam Deck also supports Steam cloud saves, so gamers can pause their gaming session on their PC and continue right where they left off on the Steam Deck.

The Steam Deck is still a full-fledged Linux computer. This technically means users can use the handheld console as a regular Linux desktop.

Users can easily plug in a mouse, keyboard, and monitor, and install other game stores, regular PC software, browse the web, and more. Additionally, determined users can also install Windows operating system on the same

Hardware specifications, and features:

The Valve Steam Deck is a gaming computer that is portable. It has a D-pad on the left and ABXY keys on the right. There are dual analog sticks as well as dual precision, capacitive trackpads.

The handheld gaming console has a 6-axis gyroscope to capture movement. It also has dual stereo speakers with DSP and a wide soundstage. There’s a 3.5mm headphone jack with dual microphones.

Additional buttons, beside the four shoulder and four back-mounted buttons, include View, Menu, Steam, and Quick Access.

The Valve Steam Deck has a 7-inch, 1280×800 resolution IPS LCD with a 16:10 aspect ratio, 400 nits maximum brightness, and touch support. Essentially, the handheld console has a 720p touchscreen.

Powering the Steam Deck is a custom AMD APU that is based on the ZEN 2 Architecture. It is a quad-core CPU with SMT enabled (8 Threads), with a variable clock speed of 2.4 to 3.5GHz. The GPU uses the latest RDNA2 architecture with 8 compute units. The APU has a variable TDP of 4 to 15W.

All Valve Steam Deck consoles get 16GB of LPDDR5 RAM. As for ports, the console gets a USB-C 3.2 Gen 2 port. It can work for power, data, display, and audio.

It is similar to the USB-C port on a PC and users can connect all of their accessories as well as a desktop monitor through this port. The port supports resolution up to 8K at 60Hz or 4K at 120Hz through the DisplayPort 1.4 Alt-mode.

The portable gaming console packs a 40Wh battery, which can reportedly power the device for about 8 hours while playing casual games. Buyers get a 45W USB-C PD charger in the box.

Additionally, there will also be a dock that will presumably have all the expansion and connectivity ports.

Valve portable gaming console pricing, availability:

The handheld gaming console, being a computer disguised as a handheld, has very aggressive pricing. Pricing varies as per the amount of onboard storage.

The base model of Valve Steam Deck packs 64GB of storage space and gets an MSRP of $399. It ships with a carrying case. The middle variant packs 256GB of storage and costs $529, and it comes with an exclusive Steam Community profile bundle.

The top-end model of Valve Steam Deck sports an MSRP of $649 and gets an anti-glare etched glass. It comes with an exclusive carrying case, exclusive Steam Community profile bundle, and exclusive virtual keyboard theme.

Interested buyers can purchase the Steam Deck in December 2021 in United States, Canada, the European Union, and the United Kingdom. Wishlist, however, is currently open on the Steam website.

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