If you don’t know Valve, you don’t know gaming. Gabe Newell, CEO of the company responsible for hits like Half-Life 2 and Portal as well as the awesome Steam platform says that building its own hardware is something the company might consider. Is that disruption we smell?
Speaking in an interview with Penny Arcade’s Ben Kuchera, Newell provided the following insight:
Well, if we have to sell hardware we will. We have no reason to believe we’re any good at it, it’s more we think that we need to continue to have innovation and if the only way to get these kind of projects started is by us going and developing and selling the hardware directly then that’s what we’ll do. It’s definitely not the first thought that crosses our mind; we’d rather hardware people that are good at manufacturing and distributing hardware do that. We think it’s important enough that if that’s what we end up having to do then that’s what we end up having to do.
Newell even hints at Valve having prototypes of wearable computers featuring high resolution displays. Come on Newell, show us, pretty please?
It’s a crazy thought that Valve might be planning its own hardware, but not one that’s completely ungrounded.
With Steam’s 30 million-strong community, you know there’s some serious loyalty there. And with smart mobile apps on iOS and Android that make buying PC games easier than ever, Valve’s in a good position to make some serious bank.
Still, getting into hardware isn’t easy. Just take a look at how much money Microsoft invested into the Xbox brand. Not every company can afford to lose money for every original Xbox console and on the Xbox 360 during the first few years in order to gain market share.
Hardware is a tricky business. Even Sony messed up with the launch of the original PS3.
That said, Valve could pull a Razer and release a mobile device that plays full PC games similar to the Blade or even a Switchblade. Wouldn’t that be something?
At the right price, I’d consider it, and I’m not even a huge PC gamer (although, I would like to be). Imagine that, a portable PC gaming device that plays any Steam game. Sounds like a dream, or maybe Razer’s Project Fiona tablet prototype.