Steam Deck Firmware Update Makes Offline Mode More Convenient

You can take your Steam Deck with you on the go without the hassle of a restart thanks to a new firmware update.

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An update for the Steam Deck makes it even more Switch-like by making it more convenient to take it with you on the go. The patch notes for the April 5 client update say that Offline Mode will no longer require you to restart Steam. That would seem to effectively make it a toggle, meaning you can pick up your Steam Deck and take it with you away from a network connection more easily.

Other changes listed in the patch notes include some additional features studios can use when working on Steam Deck compatibility. Developers can now add support for showing the equivalent of other controller layouts like Xbox, PlayStation, and Switch on the Steam button footer. A new section in the App Properties section allows users to provide compatibility feedback, and a callout feature will alert users when a developer has added comments about compatibility. Those changes come among several other bug fixes and usability updates for the dual trackpad.

The Steam Deck is Valve's handheld PC hardware, with a form factor that's similar (albeit bigger) to the Nintendo Switch. In GameSpot's Steam Deck review, Alessandro Barbosa called it a "wonderfully constructed and powerful portable PC," hailing both its out-of-the-box functionality and the ability to customize it to do much more.

Previously, preorders were only going out to those in the Q1 group. Now that we've passed into April, though, Q2 emails have started to go out, and Valve has said it will be ramping up preorders with emails now going out weekly or even sometimes twice weekly.

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