Valve partners with Samsung for Steam Link TV sets
October 14, 2016 // 9:56 a.m.
Valve has confirmed that it has signed a deal with Samsung to integrate Steam Link technology into the company's future smart TVs, negating the need to buy a dedicated box.
While the initial explosion of interest in cloud-based gaming - where powerful remote render farms are used for the heavy lifting of gaming, sending video and audio streams to a lightweight client device for display - may have died down with few beyond Sony seeing longevity, the extension of the technology into in-home streaming has proven somewhat more popular. Valve's Steam Link box allows a user with a powerful gaming PC to play games on TVs around the house without having to lug the base unit around, but the company's deal with Samsung means even that small box may become unnecessary.
Under the partnership, future Samsung smart TVs will integrate Steam Link functionality, giving them the ability to use Steam In-Home Streaming without a dedicated receiver box. Announced at Valve's Steam Dev Days conference, details of the partnership - such as which models of TV will support Steam Link and when they are likely to hit the market - have not yet been released.
One particular piece of information missing is whether the Steam Link support will be ready out-of-the-box. Playing Steam games on a Steam Link system requires a compatible controller, and if Samsung decides not to bundle a Steam Controller or other gamepad with the TVs then buyers will need to shell out additional cash to make use of the Steam Link functionality.