Valve talks about plans for Steam Deck 2 and beyond

The Steam Deck OLED isn’t the sequel to the original Steam Deck; it’s the predecessor improved to its full potential. The Steam Deck 2 — for lack of a better name — will likely appear in two to three years, when Valve feels it can use nascent hardware to produce a “generational leap” in performance. But it’s unlikely Valve will stop here. Speaking with the Steam Deck team it seems that the Steam Deck project is only just beginning.

“Although Steam Deck is super successful, it’s still very early for handheld gaming,” says Yazan Aldehayyat, a hardware engineer at Valve. “There’s still a lot of work to be done. We don’t see ourselves as achieving all of our goals any time soon. There are multiple years ahead of us.”

Aldehayyat has compared the PC hand-helds’ potential to that of the smartphone boom, during which major tech companies were competing to improve their products from year to. “We see Asus and other companies and we love that,” says Aldehayyat. “We’d love for more companies to make some. Steam Deck OLED will be a great data point in the next year and half. [that] we moved this far.”

The top of the Steam Deck OLED, including the orange power button


Of course, it’s not surprising that Valve would see itself as Apple in this situation. “Valve has a unique perspective,” says Lawrence Yang, a UX designer at Valve. “We can do the Apple thing where we have the whole stack. This allows us to move more quickly and efficiently and accomplish things that other businesses might not have the ability to. And just like other companies have other strengths, customers will have more options to choose from.”

Yang responded that Valve maintains a close relationship with game developers via the Steam Store. As we’ve already seen, many studios will optimize to not just run on the Steam Deck, but make the most of its specific specs.

The smartphone era has chilled since its technological and creative boom in the mid-’00s. But as Aldehayyat says, “We haven’t hit the plateau.” The pair has a list of things to be done.

Both Valve employees were clear they didn’t want the Apple model of shipping a new Steam Deck every year like Apple did with the iPhone. At the same time they stressed they were only getting started.

When asked for clarity — that Valve hopes to be continuing the Steam Deck line not just to the Steam Deck 2 but beyond that — Yang replied, “Yes, definitely. We’re excited to see how many customers we’ve been able to make happy with Steam Deck — our internal measure for success — and are looking forward to continue making more Steam Deck models well into the future.”

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