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Valve's Steam Link hardware is almost gone for good

By Shawn Knight · 15 replies
Nov 20, 2018
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  1. Valve is further distancing itself from the hardware sector. The developer, publisher and digital distributor in a recent community post said the supply of physical Steam Link devices is sold out in Europe and nearly gone in the US.

    Although the company didn’t flat out say it was being discontinued, there was no language in the post to suggest it would be restocked once existing inventory is spoken for.

    Moving forward, Valve said it will continue to support existing Steam Link hardware and distribute software versions of Steam Link which are available for many smartphones, tablets and televisions (but not iOS).

    Announced in mid-2015, Steam Link made it possible to stream games or other content from your PC or Steam Machine to a television in your house via network connectivity. Such functionality could be incredibly convenient if your gaming PC isn’t near the living room or bedroom but you wanted to play on the big screen.

    Valve earlier this year took a step back from its failed Steam Machines initiative, purging the systems from its storefront. The console-style PCs were meant to facilitate gaming in the living room but the concept never really took off, largely due to excessively high pricing.

    Permalink to story.

     
  2. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,972   +1,320

    "It's the end of the road for Steam Link, another failed hardware initiative from Valve."

    That's a shame. Thinking Valve didn't do as good of a education/sales job as they could have with these. Seems people didn't understand what it was or realized how great this little device is to play games from your PC to big-screen TV. I have two of them in two different rooms and use them all the time.
     
    Reehahs, Drew Valadez, D3z4R1 and 2 others like this.
  3. ShagnWagn

    ShagnWagn TS Guru Posts: 443   +296

    I've never heard of the Link. I believe using a simple KVM switch would be much better than this, plus you get to keep 4K resolution if you want. The benefit I see is it uses the network instead, but that would introduce some latency. It also lowers the resolution to 1080p when all TVs for the last few years are 4K.

    Could it be due to little to no news articles (ugh, advertising?)?

    I built and run two gaming HTPCs in my house.

    "The console-style PCs were meant to facilitate gaming in the living room but the concept never really took off, largely due to excessively high pricing."

    Yes, PC retailers seem to take advantage of gamers, especially "specialty" gaming components. Even if it is standard hardware, if they slap "gaming" on it, they raise the price significantly. I will say that console hardware profit is typically not from selling the console, it is through the high game prices they "recover" lost profit off the hardware sale.
     
  4. Panda218

    Panda218 TS Evangelist Posts: 553   +270

    Yeah I absolutely love my Steam link boxes. I have a few friends who bought them thinking they were consoles, so valve definitely messed up their marketing.
     
  5. phillai

    phillai TS Enthusiast Posts: 50   +15

    This is shame and a missed opportunity.
    Thankfully, I got Samsung TV Steam Link App on my Samsung TV, so all is not lost!
     
  6. Satish Mallya

    Satish Mallya TS Maniac Posts: 168   +145

    This is a shame - while I don't use it for gaming, my steam link is very good for streaming music/movies.
    It's considerably higher quality than casting to Chromecast.
     
  7. paynetrain007

    paynetrain007 TS Enthusiast Posts: 91   +8

    Not everyone has the money for an HTPC and not everyone wants to or can run cables throughout the walls in their house. Steamlink + Powerline networking has been the best purchase I've ever made. Fantastic streaming of movies + when you want to sit on the couch with a controller and play more casual games.
     
    Drew Valadez and D3z4R1 like this.
  8. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 10,789   +4,593

    Of course it is, because Steam OS turned into a joke.
     
  9. ShagnWagn

    ShagnWagn TS Guru Posts: 443   +296

    Whoa, thanks for letting me know about Powerline! That is cool and I'm surprised I haven't come across it. I asked our network engineer about it and he's never heard (really??). I haven't needed any networking for a long time though. I know cable companies were trying to use power poles for it, but not inside customers' homes.

    So, a gaming HTPC is the same as a gaming PC except a different looking case. Do you have a different definition for it? If you can afford a PC then you could have built a HTPC. Actually, a HTPC is cheaper as you don't need to buy a monitor specifically for the computer - you use the TV. So in this case, you still have the HTPC, but now you also need to buy the Link + Powerline. You just increased your expenditure by a computer monitor + Link + Powerline. :) How much is extra is all that?

    I also use a controller (xbox 360) from the couch, plus I have a keyboard with touchpad (Logitech diNovo Edge) and mouse. Works very well for me.
     
  10. Panda218

    Panda218 TS Evangelist Posts: 553   +270

    Clearly you have the money if you built 2x HTPCs that support 4k gaming... I have rne rig, 2 links and I likely spent half as much as you. Sure I don't get 4k support, but that doesnt matter to me. I'm just a 1080p 144hz pleb when I'm at my command center. I can deal with 60 fps via the links.
     
  11. ShagnWagn

    ShagnWagn TS Guru Posts: 443   +296

    You seem to be making some assumptions. Please quote where I said both support 4k gaming. I built the first one in 2008/9. It's called obsolescence. The other one I built in 2015/6. The one I built 10 years ago does run 4k videos (I upgraded the video card around 2012 for HDMI), just not games at 4k. I suppose some antique games will?

    So apples to apples, speaking of just the case components, there is still disagreement that a gaming HTPC costs the same as a gaming PC? I guess I'm not seeing why. /shrug. Anyone like to please explain if otherwise?

    1080p is fine for me. PCs natively upscale, plus some TVs do this well.
     
    Lionvibez likes this.
  12. Jackwoz

    Jackwoz TS Member Posts: 24   +13

    A KVM is not what this is replacing. For me my gaming PC is in the office on the 1st floor and my Lounge is on the second floor. This is the type of scenario it was made for.

    Since when is 4K gaming the norm?
     
    Drew Valadez and Panda218 like this.
  13. Drew Valadez

    Drew Valadez TS Enthusiast Posts: 25   +9

    Those aren't even comparable devices. Apples and oranges. Yeah you lose out on 4K but that is hardly a game stopper.

    First of all, what kind of "network engineer" do you work with that has never heard of a powerline network adapter? And a powerline adapter isn't what companies are doing, it's what you can do. You get two adapters (typically) and plug one into your switch (or router combo) and then plug that into the outlet. From there you can plug the second adapter into a power outlet, anywhere the circuit is the same, and then run a ethernet cable from it to your device. No ISP involvement in this whatsoever.

    Second, it's been said over and over again, this brings the "gaming pc" to your TV. So, $10 for a Link, and $40 or so for a powerline adapter, this is cheaper and easier than any HTPC you could EVER whip together.
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00AWRUICG/?tag=httpwwwtechsp-20

    Third, Xbox One/360 or PS3/4 Controllers all hook up to this thing. From your couch, with and without a wire.

    I don't mean to sound rude but you're on a tech forum trying to explain to people something you don't even have a clear grasp of yourself.
     
    Panda218 likes this.
  14. ShagnWagn

    ShagnWagn TS Guru Posts: 443   +296

    Yeah, "network engineer", that is what I was thinking. lol. We've had several network outages multiple times throughout the day. It's seriously difficult to work in, so not surprising. As far as powerline, yes I clearly indicated I didn't know companies (retailers selling products) were doing it for the home.

    It's apparent I'm not explaining that a gaming HTPC is the same price as a gaming PC component-wise. How much clearer can I get?? Do I really need to show prices of HTPC cases versus standard cases? They are very similar. People still arguing me on that... lol

    If you have a PC, you ALSO have to:

    -buy a PC monitor
    -buy the Link
    -buy the Powerline.

    With a HTPC, you don't have to buy a PC monitor, nor Link, nor Powerline. It's all right there local. I don't see why it's so hard to grasp that.

    As far as controller - the same thing can be done with a HTPC. I guess that is news to you? If you don't, I don't care. You do now. :)

    Well, I guess we are all here to learn and help each other (such as I have). Otherwise shouldn't you just have your own site?

    Have a Happy Thankgiving if you celebrate it!
     
  15. Drew Valadez

    Drew Valadez TS Enthusiast Posts: 25   +9

    It's apparent I'm not explaining that a gaming HTPC is the same price as a gaming PC component-wise. How much clearer can I get?? Do I really need to show prices of HTPC cases versus standard cases? They are very similar. People still arguing me on that... lol

    Just about everyone here knows what a HTPC, no argument. This isn't a HTPC. This is to avoid having an additional computer. And HTPC can cost more due to form factor, mATX boards can at times cost more and finding a GPU that fits a HTPC case can be limited.

    If you have a PC, you ALSO have to:

    -buy a PC monitor
    -buy the Link
    -buy the Powerline.

    You don't have to buy a monitor, you hook this up to a TV. IE: You have your PC in your office but game on it as well. Sometimes you like to play in the Living Room so a $10 link and a $30 PowerLine (if necessary) is what you would need, hell, the thing has AC WiFi built in, may be unecessary depending on the games you want to play.

    With a HTPC, you don't have to buy a PC monitor, nor Link, nor Powerline. It's all right there local. I don't see why it's so hard to grasp that.

    So why don't you have to buy a monitor? What are you gonna play on? Where does the networking come from? Getting the point?... This device connects to your PC in a different area of the house to a existing TV or monitor, it is not a replacement but an addition.

    For sh*ts and giggles, you have your HTPC in your living room, as you suggest, what happens if you want to play in your bedroom? Do you buy another HTPC for the higher price? No, you buy this guy, and if necessary, a powerline adapter for under $50 and have an additional area to play on your HTPC/PC on your already existing TV in a different location if you so desire.

    EDIT:

    I just realized you have NO idea what this is, the link is literally the ONLY extra component you need, it is a dumb device that CONNECTS to your existing PC. No need to b
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2018
    Reehahs likes this.
  16. ShagnWagn

    ShagnWagn TS Guru Posts: 443   +296

    I understand your points, but it is very clear you only read part of what I've been saying. I know exactly what this does. In fact, I own one. You wasted a long reply, but thanks for trying to say what I already know. Perhaps it will help others without misleading them? Merry Christmas.
     
    Last edited: Nov 23, 2018

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