A yr after its official launch, it is clear that Valve’s Steam Deck PC Gaming handheld has been an unquestionable success. Regardless of early manufacturing backlogs, Valve’s machine has obtained a principally heat response from reviewers (us included), and it is presently occupying the quantity three spot on the corporate’s personal international greatest sellers record (for no matter which means, precisely).
However a yr on, in a market centered on efficiency and upgrades, individuals have naturally been questioning after we may see a sequel to the machine, providing up higher efficiency – particularly after testing has proven its limits within the newest video games. However a current interview with Valve designer Lawrence Yang and engineer Pierre-Loup Griffais over at Rock Paper Shotgun has thrown chilly water on anybody hoping for a extra highly effective Steam Deck to reach any time within the subsequent couple years.
Yang does admit that the machine’s success “has made us much more excited to look intently at what will be improved.” However he is clear that there is principally no probability that your present Steam Deck (or one you may purchase within the close to future, naturally) goes to really feel out of date for years to come back (no less than by way of efficiency). Yang instructed the gaming outlet that “a real next-gen Deck with a major bump in horsepower wouldn’t be for just a few years.”
After all, we would already heard late final yr that the subsequent iteration of the Steam Deck was probably going to be centered on display screen and battery enhancements, slightly than pushing extra pixels. So we weren’t anticipating the corporate to maneuver past its customized AMD Van Gogh-based APU in 2023. Now it appears probably that on-the-go avid gamers must wait till no less than 2026 (or maybe vacation season, 2025?) to get a real follow-up machine from Valve.
This provides handheld rivals like Ayaneo a pretty big window to ship one thing considerably extra highly effective. However these units thus far have been way more costly than the Steam Deck, and to various levels, much less refined. So we think about that loads of individuals will simply maintain tight to their present Decks and see how issues play out over the subsequent few years.
After all, Valve additionally has no actual enterprise cause to inform anybody about its future Steam Deck plans, now that it is received its manufacturing kinks ironed out and its present machine is seemingly promoting very nicely. If and when gross sales slide precipitously, or key video games develop into actually unplayable on the first-gen machine, the corporate could all of the sudden be extra forthcoming about its plans for a extra highly effective transportable PC.
Presuming it is already exhausting at work on designs for a next-gen machine behind closed doorways, if Valve can supply the mandatory new elements, it may actually transfer up these plans to someday earlier than early 2026. Or no less than that is what the on-the-go gamer in me desires to imagine.