Valve has previously confirmed that it is committed to the Steam Deck as a multi-generational product. But will the second generation Steam Deck come with a significant performance jump? You might not count on that, says Valve.
Steam Deck designers Pierre Loup-Griffais and Lawrence Yang sat down with the edge for a comprehensive interview on all things Steam Deck. Among the things that were discussed, the designers at Valve talked about current efforts to improve the Steam Deck hardware that ships to customers. But one of the biggest takeaways was that the company wouldn’t necessarily be looking for a performance boost from a second-generation product.
Both designers agreed that the two shortcomings a sequel needs to address are the display and battery life. When asked if the product would work better, they were non-committal, saying that Valve is weighing whether to keep its hardware consistent. Griffais said that the company appreciates that all Steam Deck customers can play the same games, and that the company might not seek a performance improvement unless it is significant.
This is not necessarily a bad thing. Nintendo’s Switch OLED came with notably few hardware upgrades other than the display. Presumably a second generation Steam Deck would be an upgrade along these lines. The Steam Deck can already play many games, including some of the most popular Steam titles, but it will eventually need an upgrade to keep up: PC gaming is constantly evolving, and in the process, requires better specs. After all, some games start to recommend 32 GB of RAM.
The company also answered other pressing questions about the Steam Deck. For starters, the company said that the current product may never be “stable” like a normal console is, as Valve is constantly updating its product and improving it. This not only extends to the software, but also to the hardware, as it takes user feedback into account to improve the interior of the console with the revisions. After strong criticism from iFixit for its hard-to-remove battery, the company has been working on new hardware revisions to make it easier to remove and replace.
If you’ve been waiting for a second-gen Steam Deck with better performance, you might as well pull the trigger on the current model.
Source: The Edge