The Steam Deck is currently celebrating its formal birthday since its launch and many are already anticipating that Valve may have an upgrade for it along the way. Be it by way of a “Pro” version with beefier hardware or a Steam Deck 2 altogether featuring a newer design but speculations are now being put to rest as Valve, have stated in an interview that, that a new Steam Deck is not arriving for the next few years.
“A true next-gen Deck with a significant bump in horsepower wouldn’t be for a few years” – Lawrence Yang, Designer (Valve)
Speaking to Rock, Paper, Shotgun about the Steam Deck, Valve designer Lawrence Yang and engineer Pierre-Loup Griffais in which they discussed the things leading up to launch and how it was now a year later, the interview closed with Yang putting to bed speculations of a new-gen Steam Deck and states that a “true next-gen Deck… would be for a few years”.
In the interview, the Valve team did address that the primary challenge now for the Steam Deck isn’t just optimizing it to run current games but actually meeting the minimum hardware new games need. New titles like Returnal on PC as well as Wild Hearts have raised the bar and their minimum settings are already challenging for the Steam Deck to handle.
All of this seats in wins for the Steam Deck for games that are notoriously resource-intensive with games like Cyberpunk 2077 featuring Steam Deck presets in-game to make them run as best as possible on the gaming handheld.
The Steam Deck currently sits comfortably in the Top 10 best-sellers for Valve’s Steam store. Take note that ordering directly from Steam of th Deck is limited by region and countries like the Philippines have been reliant in 3rd-parties to carry the Steam Deck as Valve has no distribution partner in this regtion. Still, this hasn’t slowed down the adoption of the Steam Deck.
The Steam Deck runs on a custom APU made by AMD featuring a quad-core Zen2 CPU core and a GPU that has comparable performance to a Radeon RX 6000 GPU. It runs a custom Linux distro built on Arch Linux called SteamOS v3.3, which differs from earlier SteamOS that ran on Debian Linux. The hardware suggests this was developed during the Ryzen 3000 era and delays from AMD in releasing newer architectures plus looming supply challenges potentially influenced Valve in finalizing their hardware with these specs.
Valve has set the goal of making the entire Steam library playable on the Steam Deck have been working tirelessly to deliver this. With constant updates to games and the OS itself, Valve seems set to bringing the current Steam Deck to near-perfect playability first before developing new hardware.