Published: Sun, January 19, 2020
Electronics | By Kelly Massey

Google Is Planning to Bring Steam To...Chromebooks

Google Is Planning to Bring Steam To...Chromebooks

It would appear that Google is working to bring official Steam support to its Linux-based Chrome OS operating system for supported Chromebook devices.

That's according to a report from Android Police, after an interview with the director of product management for Chrome OS, Kan Liu. If Steam does arrive on Chromebooks, it will make Valve the first major game storefront on a platform that has been walled off from PC and console releases. Nearly all the Chrome OS devices are entry-level or mid-range computers with modest internals, which are not capable of running resource-hungry applications like games since they come with dedicated GPUs. Most games on Steam still require Windows compatibility; few, if any, of them are explicitly compatible with Chrome OS.

With Steam on Chromebooks, you could also stream games from a more powerful gaming PC to a Chromebook using the Steam in-home streaming feature, turning a Chromebook into an affordable portable gaming device, regardless of its specs (it just needs a reliable network connection).

Liu declined to provide a timeline for the project, but did confirm it would be enabled by Chrome OS's Linux compatibility. If it happens successfully in the near future, Steam will be the first gaming platform for ChromeOS apart from Google's own Stadia Cloud Gaming, which is now available in selected regions.

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There's also the question of minimum system requirements, however. That's to say nothing of RAM and storage space, both of which are vital for high-end games.

However, even that is a start, offering Chromebook owners hundreds of titles, from 2D indie games to retro classics, that could potentially run on their machines.

However, Google now wants to change the fate of Chrome OS. It's not as good as playing a game natively, but it's a far sight better than trying to play remote games on Chrome OS at the moment.

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