The Steam Deck is an undeniable hit, almost single-handedly legitimizing the niche of portable console-style gaming PCs. (But don’t try to single-hand the Steam Deck, it’s pretty chunky.) Valve has been selling every single one it can make, and even with expanded manufacturing capacity, pre-orders are stretching out for months. Now an official publication has confirmed what should be a no-brainer: the company is already working on a second generation.
The confirmation is a bit low-key, buried in a translated version of a PDF booklet made specifically for the Asian market, and gamers who might not be as familiar with Valve as western gamers. It was spotted by GamingOnLinux. On the very last text page is found this nugget (emphasis ours):
Steam Deck represents the first in a new category of Steam handheld gaming PCs. In the future, Valve will follow up on this product with improvements and iterations to hardware and software, bringing new versions of Steam Deck to market. Like the original, and like all PCs, these future products will continue to provide access to the same Steam game catalog that gamers already know and love.
A second-gen Steam Deck will be notable for a few reasons. One, since the original is a first-gen design, you can expect some dramatic improvements using everything Valve has learned from the design and manufacturing process. Big jumps in processing power, part and material quality, ergonomics, and battery life are all possible, though not guaranteed. But more than that, this will be Valve’s first hardware product with a second release. The much-ballyhooed Steam Controller and streaming gadget Steam Link both got only a single hardware design before being shelved. Naturally, there’s no indication of when a new Steam Deck might arrive.
With a product category receiving more attention than ever before, and competitors crawling out of the woodwork to try and get into the market, Valve will need to innovate in order to stay on top. We can’t wait to see what it comes up with.