Valve Corporation is a Bellevue, Washington based video game development company that was founded by former Microsoft employees Gabe Newell and Mike Harrington. Valve became famous for the games Half-Life and Portal. Valve’s software distribution platform Steam has been popular since it launched in 2004. Now Valve is releasing an operating system called SteamOS. This code will be available for manufacturers that want to set it up on their gaming hardware.
Valve is going to release a console of their own that runs on SteamOS. The console is rumored to be called Steam Box.
“As we’ve been working on bringing Steam to the living room, we’ve come to the conclusion that the environment best suited to delivering value to customers is an operating system built around Steam itself,” stated Valve on the Steam website. “SteamOS combines the rock-solid architecture of Linux with a gaming experience built for the big screen.”
There are no licensing costs for using SteamOS so manufacturers will be encouraged to distribute the software on their hardware platforms. Steam currently has around 50 million active users. There is over 2,000 games on the service as well.