Valve's recent announcement of Steam Machines, a "powerful new category of living room hardware," could threaten traditional consoles or it might not, a pair of analysts have said.
IHS Inc. analyst Piers Harding-Rolls told Bloomberg that Steam's 50 million members is evidence enough that Valve's push into the living room could threaten consoles.
"This substantial user base makes Valve and its community of PC gamers a potentially significant threat to other established games platforms," he said.
On the other side of the argument is Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter, who said Valve has yet to display a compelling reason why gamers should flock to the new technology.
"They [sic] only way they sell it is to give us a reason why we need it," Pachter said. "If they make every game work better with this OS, that's great, but I don't see how it becomes a big threat to the console guys."
Microsoft corporate vice president Phil Harrison said today that the Xbox One maker is watching what Valve does with SteamOS and Steam Machines with "great interest."
Valve has produced its own Steam Machine, while various other manufacturers are creating their own models. These machines are expected to ship in 2014, and a limited beta will be offered. Details on pricing or general availability have not been disclosed.
Valve announced Steam OS on Monday and Steam Machines yesterday. The company has a third announcement for this week planned for Friday, September 27 at 1 p.m. EDT. The developer has teased that this announcement may be related to a proprietary controller.