Newell: Apple is biggest threat to living room

Written by David Hing

February 1, 2013 // 9:21 a.m.

Tags: #big-picture #gabe-newell #living-room #steam

Valve head honcho Gabe Newell has stated that it is Apple and not any of the current console manufacturers that presents the biggest threat to the company's attempt to conquer the living room.

Giving a lecture at the University of Texas' LBJ School of Public Affairs, Polygon reports that Newell has his eyes on Apple's growth and its potential.

'The threat right now is that Apple has gained a huge amount of market share, and has a relatively obvious pathway towards entering the living room with their platform,' said Newell.

He went on to highlight that factors including increased hard drive space and the ability to use hardware that consumers already own will make it easier for the PC to move towards a living room environment.

'It's like one of those things where afterwards it will seem like it was very simple, when beforehand, everyone sort of denied that it was possible,' added Newell.

Valve has most recently attempted to provide the option for players to move their PC gaming habits into the living room through development of its Big Picture mode, which scales Steam's user interface up for a larger screen and also simplifies input to be more accessible through a control pad.

The Steam Box itself is currently still in development. The recently announced Xi3 Piston has been erroneously reported as the Steam Box itself, but instead this is simply a small PC that has received funding from Valve and is apparently optimised for Steam's Big Picture mode. The Steam Box will reportedly be fully developed and distributed by Valve as opposed to going through a third party.

Although Apple has done incredibly well to carve out market share in the mobile and tablet arena, having pretty much created both markets in the first place, its efforts in the living room space have been less successful. The lacklustre Apple TV was launched in 2007 and acts as a media server, able to stream content from iTunes and various other online video platforms onto a larger television screen.
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