Valve Reveals Plans To Enhance Steam Deck’s Display, Battery

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A Steam Deck shows gameplay from The Last of Us.

Picture: Valve / Sony / Kotaku

As we mentioned earlier this week, the Steam Deck has had one hell of a launch year. It ought to be no shock, then, that Valve has its eye on the way forward for its new handheld, which it has formally categorized as a “multi-generational product.” The corporate has now revealed a little bit of what it’s hoping to enhance and the place it’s trying to develop within the {hardware} sport.

In a wide-ranging interview with The Verge, Steam Deck designers Lawrence Yang and Pierre-Loup Griffais talked about ambitions and concrete targets for the Steam Deck. After practically a yr out within the wild, the Deck has actually impressed with its efficiency and wide selection of games. Nevertheless, areas for enchancment are clear: The display screen is serviceable, nevertheless it’s removed from that of, say, the brand new Nintendo Change OLED Mannequin. And the battery not solely tends to empty shortly however, as iFixit observed in its review, it’s one of many least fixable issues in an otherwise repair-friendly device. We all know now that these final two factors are high of thoughts for Valve.

Although the corporate didn’t reveal a lot of its plans for the screen’s improvement, it did share some perception into the battery, its replaceability, and the way future iterations of the product are addressing areas of concern.

With a battery that’s fast to lose its juice, and the character of such an influence supply being to degrade over time, poor replaceability is a disappointment. Griffais advised The Verge that resulting from the possibility of battery expansion, “you possibly can’t actually have the battery-shaped gap [inside the Deck] be precisely the identical measurement because the battery” and that the entire glue that holds it in place is to maintain it from shifting round an excessive amount of.

Concern for a rattley battery was apparently a difficulty in growth. “In a few of our early prototypes,” Griffais mentioned, “we had [the battery shifting around] and I’ll inform you, it doesn’t really feel good in any respect once you’re simply shifting round and attempting to make use of your Deck.” Yang comically added, “You don’t need a Steam Deck maraca, and also you don’t need a battery probably touching different necessary parts and jostling them round.”

So the choice to safe the battery in place so rigidly was essential to get the Deck in a playable, shippable, and reliably secure state. Yang revealed that Valve has “rolled in a change to the geometry of the [glue that holds the battery]” which ought to permit for simpler elimination and repairs down the road.

Valve additionally revealed, maybe to the shock and pleasure of a choose few, {that a} new Steam Controller can also be one thing the corporate is aspiring to make occur. The original Steam Controller was a little bit of an odd fowl, however its excessive stage of customization actually caught the eye of a devoted, if small, fan base. Us choose few who fell in love with it already knew it, however the Steam Deck has continued to show the need for more malleable and dynamic gamepads for PC gaming.

Learn Extra: The Steam Deck’s Funky Controls Prove That Gamepads Are Outdated

However if you happen to’re able to throw cash on the display screen for a follow-up to Valve’s owl-shaped controller, I’m sorry to say that it’d take some time. “Proper now, we’re specializing in the Deck,” Yang mentioned. “[A controller is] undoubtedly one thing the place we’d be excited to work with a third-party or discover ourselves.”


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