Valve chief Gabe Newell has claimed that Apple is the biggest threat to the Steam Box or any other living room PC, not Nintendo, Sony or Microsoft.
The co-founder of one of the most successful and innovative videogame companies in the world was delivering a lecture to a class at University of Texas, as reported by Polygon.
“The threat right now is that Apple has gained a huge amount of market share, and has a relatively obvious pathway towards entering the living room with their platform,” revealed Newell.
Newell was dismissive of the threat posed by the console heavyweights when it comes to claiming the living room entertainment space. “I think Apple rolls the console guys really easily,” he said.
Valve is developing the so-called Steam Box – a low-cost, off-the-shelf, compact PC running Valve’s digital content distribution service, Steam. Other manufacturers will also be permitted to produce their own Steam Boxes with varying specs.
Steam Box vs PlayStation
It might seem ambitious to take on the might of the PlayStation, Xbox and Wii brands with this daring new concept, but Newell is clearly more concerned about Apple’s own often rumoured entry to the living room entertainment space (of which the current Apple TV is merely a tester).
“The question is can we make enough progress in the PC space to establish ourselves there, and also figure out better ways of addressing mobile before Apple takes over the living room?” mused Newell.
Newell believes that the accessibility and openness of the Steam Box concept will prove to be a draw over the closed console ecosystems. He thinks that people will reason this way: “‘Well, I could buy a console, which assumes I’ll re-buy all my content, have a completely different video system, and, oh, I have a completely different group of friends, apparently. Or I can just extend everything I love about the PC and the internet into the living room.'”
What do you think? Will it be Apple versus the Steam Box for the future of living room entertainment, or do the console old guard have a say in this too? Let us know in the comments box below.