Xbox Chief Product Officer not worried about Steam Machines

Marc Whitten thinks there's room for both Steam Machines and consoles.

"I think there's space for both," Xbox Chief Product Officer Marc Whitten told Engadget when asked whether he views Valve's Steam Machines as new competition in the living room, "I'm not sweating it."

"The last thing I'll ever do in my entire life is get into a flame war with Gabe Newell. There's no win in that," Whitten joked in the interview, but later suggested that the Steam Machine and its Steam OS are not as user-friendly as the Xbox One. "When you get into that living room environment, you don't want to spend any of your brain cells doing anything but being entertained," he said. "I don't want to work on it; I don't want to feel like I have to know how it works."

Whitten also said that he's excited about the Crystal Cove prototype of the Oculus Rift virtual reality goggles and Sony's PlayStation Now game streaming service the company announced at the show, calling it a golden age of gaming. He said that both technologies will only grow the industry, presumably to the benefit of all parties.

Recently, Whitten said that sorting out the Xbox One's tricky social functions will be the priority focus of the console's first major update.

At CES 2014 Valve revealed that 12 different manufacturers were already working on producing their own Steam Machines. You can find a roundup of what we know about them so far, here, and our thoughts on what are some of the challenges they face, here.

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Discussion

248 comments
Loshead
Loshead

And Blockbuster wasn't worried about Netflix, where are they now.

tightwad34
tightwad34

Uh, it never crossed my mind that steam machines could take consoles out. Consoles have been the mainstay and the only way they will go away is if us consumers don't want them anymore and steam machines sure as hell ain't gonna do that. Don't even know why this is a made up issue(nevermind, I know now, it's for the clicks and scrambling comments). More fine journalism from a new guy. Not to mention having a dozen+ of these machines tells me there could be a sacrifice or compromise in quality. Are they catering to the consoles, or just PC? Either way, consoles will live on for the forseeable future. And the cost, don't forget about the $$$.

demonkingx5
demonkingx5

Ok why are some of you saying the price point of the steam machine is too much they have two of them priced at 500$ with a GTX 760 that GPU is far more powerful than the PS4 GPU if they would make those two steam machines the flag ship then they will get the attention of the consumers having all these other ones is an issue they only really need these two.

HowlPendragon
HowlPendragon

All Valve has to do to make this a huge success is build their own Steam Machine with specs that can top both consoles by a fair margin.

Basically, just top the PS4s power, offer it for $500, add the customizability PCs have (or close to it), and they're set.

Hurvl
Hurvl

Yeah, that's the spirit! There is room for all of us. We can all peacefully co-exist.

Gravity_Slave
Gravity_Slave

Considering what it costs to actually produce a Steam Machine, let alone sell one...I don't think anyone in the console industry is worried.  



19James89
19James89

Tablet and mobile has had no affect on handheld gaming, handheld gaming has had no affect on console gaming, console gaming has no affect on PC gaming and the Steam machine will have no affect on any other type of gaming. 


The Steam Machine would be a great idea if most graphics cards didn't come with a HDMI port which you can hook up to your TV. Unfortunately the Steam Machine is an inbetweener without the price point of a console and some will have high-end specs and some won't and the fact that 13 different forms of the machine are coming out is just going a) cause market confusion and b) cause market saturation. 


I like the concept of the Steam Machine, but at the end of the day it offers nothing new that you can't already do with a PC. 



edwardsjnr04
edwardsjnr04

If you want a powerful machine that plays games plays any video file any music file surf the internet use a keyboard and mouse and a game pad there is only one option........ Pc

troyo90
troyo90

I waited months for the reveal of the Steam Machines... and when the news finally came out, and I realized I could build something just as powerful for half the price... I built my first custom PC! And guess what it is more powerful than both the XB1 and PS4. For just about the same price. Stop wasting your money people.

Nothing against consoles, I've owned a PS3 and still own a 360. But come on gamers. Wake up and smell the ripoff

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

"you don't want to spend any of your brain cells doing anything but being entertained... I don't want to feel like I have to know how it works."

-Marc Whitten on the demise of human civilization.

smackdowner360
smackdowner360

Why would they be worried people who wants the best platform with the best exclusives will buy the Xbox One.Thats why they have sold over 3 million in 13 countrys in just 5 weeks and still cant meet demand.Can only imagine what they will sell once they hit the other countrys

gamefreak215jd
gamefreak215jd

Don't know if the Steam Machine is a "threat" to M$ but the Seam OS sure seems to be one.It has several advantages over Windows in terms of gaming and can completely replace Windows for that purpose provided that Valve manages to port a reasonable amount of games to it.

Mraou
Mraou

Who are the Steam Machines for? The hardcore PC players already have their rigs and prefer playing at a desk, and the console people will just buy a PS4.

awhite33
awhite33

The PS4 is better than the Xbox One and Steam machines.

deadpen
deadpen

Yea he isn't worried since he has already made bank it wouldn't matter to him one way or another.

cvantu
cvantu

@19James89 Tablet and Mobile has had no affect on handheld gaming? Yeah, tell Sony that with all that success they have had selling the Vita. The 3DS at least has a gimmick that separates from mobile, but you won't be seeing portable gaming systems have the success they once had...because of the tablet and mobile market.

Gravity_Slave
Gravity_Slave

@19James89  


I disagree as well.  Thats a terrible blanketed statement there.. The tablet and mobile gaming DID have an extreme impact on handhelds.  The Vita and Wii U is taking a dump right now.  Google it.  And console gaming is all but decimating the PC market.  Consoles are no longer these isolated boxes doomed to a "what you see is what you get" handicap.  Everything that the PC once held domain over the consoles, like online multiplayer, patches/fixes, DLC, streaming/downloadable movies, web browsing, upgradeable/removable HD's, etc..is being done very well by consoles.  Seriously, how sad is it that 8-9 year old consoles kept competing with current PC's?  Combine that with the fact that most home theaters rival that of any limited desk top set-up.  Frankly, If it wasn't for Steam, there wouldn't be a PC market. (even Valve see's the value in consoles by making the Steam Machine...which is too expensive anyway.  NT Valve)

sladakrobot
sladakrobot

@19James89"handheld gaming has had no affect on console gaming,"
I disagree in that point since 90% of all JRPG's moved to handhelds. I miss those times i played them on consoles/big screen.

Gravity_Slave
Gravity_Slave

@edwardsjnr04 


lol yeah and then you end up paying almost 3 times what any console gamer spends.  You can't trade in PC games once you bought it.  Everytime a new game comes out, you have to worry about meeting the benchmark, let alone compatibility issues.  Then like sladakrobot said.  The PC doesn't get all the exclusives anymore.  Hell, you guys have to start an online petition just to get GTA V.  But you keep rockin that antiquated QWERTY keyboard and mouse like its still superior 

sladakrobot
sladakrobot

@edwardsjnr04But as a console gamer you want to play its exclusives. Those rarely are ported to pc's.

tsojaybird68
tsojaybird68

@troyo90 What parts and from where?  I am trying to build one for my son and it is well over $500.  I need some guidance here.

tightwad34
tightwad34

@parrot_of_adun Yeah, I was kind of like WTF when I read that. But it is the age we live in, very sad to say.

jtthegame316
jtthegame316

@Mraou some console people will buy and x1 and some will buy a wii u and some will buy a couple of them not all console people will buy a ps  4 this is ignorance at its best assuming all console players will buy a ps 4

gamefreak215jd
gamefreak215jd

@Mraou Mostly for Valve fanboys and a few console gamers who want to try PC gaming.

NeoBillbine
NeoBillbine

@Mraou Ah, the desk remark, it makes me cringe every time I hear it. I guess console folks have no idea what the back of a pc looks like. They generally have a connector for everything but ignorance.

Spartan_418
Spartan_418

@awhite33most Steam Machines are more powerful and already have a much larger library of games than the PS4

perceptive_yoda
perceptive_yoda

@awhite33 Xbox One is better than PS4, i have an IQ of 284, therefore my statement has more validity than yours. 

edwardsjnr04
edwardsjnr04

I have a ps4 aswell I went for a gaming pc instead of an xbone

jtthegame316
jtthegame316

@Kristan1711 no they haven't if you think xbox one sales will stop at 3 million your tripping. there are planty of people that will buy one later. i have not got one yet but will buy one during this year

tightwad34
tightwad34

@NeoBillbine You don't think your statement is ignorant in any way? Talking about people who play on console when I highly doubt you know anything about 99.99999999% of them. I am a console guy but I totally respect anyone else's preference no matter what they do(but I do have a soft spot for gamers of any kind). Just try and think before you post.

billlabowski
billlabowski

@NeoBillbine That's why they're peasants bro. They live in a shell of ignorance, but hey! We get the best of both worlds.

Mraou
Mraou

@NeoBillbine @Mraou It's ignorant to think all PC games will translate to a big screen TV, played afar on a couch. Many of the top PC games, games like Sim-City, RTS games, etc have small, but elaborate HUD's that just don't translate to a TV. So yes, in that regards, those kind of PC players do prefer playing at a desk, up close so they can see the screen better.

HonorOfGod
HonorOfGod

Yes fuck Sony too and PS Now sucks.

jtthegame316
jtthegame316

That says that ms are more competent at restocking to me ms cearly realized that holding back units to make it look like you can look like people want one but can't get one is pointless

3dmatrixgamer
3dmatrixgamer

@ForceSkin@PosiTVEMinD355         yes MP gaming on PC and PSN is fully ruined thats why most of the players prefer XBL to play online games.

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

@ForceSkin@PosiTVEMinD355 First party games? There is no first party. Thus they make no games. Now, if you mean exclusives, then yes, there are many in a wide variety of budgets and production values.


Sounds like you're not actually all that familiar with the platform.

ForceSkin
ForceSkin

@PosiTVEMinD355 That's all well and good but where are the mind-blowingly awesome first-party PC games (and I don't mean motherfucking indie games)? I see many cross-platform ports, and I also hear a lot of whinging when they don't get them (GTAV anyone?). I can get on board with the fact that PCs are more powerful than consoles, that is obvious. But they are more exploitable it seems, easy to pirate/hack/cheat

PosiTVEMinD355
PosiTVEMinD355

@TenraiSenshi@Spartan_418@awhite33 Listen, PS4 is great but there is no way in hell it can compete with PC in terms of graphics and power.  It's just plain impossible to compare a machine that's fully customizable with one that isn't at all and this coming from a console guy.  On the other hand, PC people need to stop thinking they are superior just because of their powerful machines.  It's all about games in the end