GPD is reportedly working with Valve to get SteamOS on its upcoming WIN Max 2 portable gaming PC. In a response to a backer on the WIN Max 2 Indiegogo page (thanks Play on Linux (opens in a new tab)) GPD said Valve had offered a “cooperation proposal” to integrate SteamOS with the powerful handheld.
Portable gaming PCs existed long before the steam bridge (opens in a new tab), but SteamOS has given Valve’s small console an edge. It lets you easily browse and play games in your Steam library without too much hassle, and it doesn’t incur the Windows tax that can significantly increase the overall price of the handheld.
GPD’s full response to the backer who asked about the SteamOS integration reads: “Thank you for your support! In early March of this year, Valve contacted us about a cooperation proposal.But for this cooperation, Valve need to match the appropriate Steam OS system for our 6800U We need to provide the device to Valve manager, and Valve also need to improve the Steam OS system for the 6800U handheld, this process can take six months.
The WIN Max 2 is a powerful little portable gaming PC with an integrated gamepad and keyboard. It works with your choice of AMD Ryzen 7 or Intel Core i7 mobile processor, 16GB or 32GB of RAM, and a 1TB or 2TB NVMe SSD starting at $1,297. GPD has raised nearly $2 million through crowdfunding.
Since many of these laptops typically run Windows or Linux, you could theoretically install SteamOS on your own. But it’s not optimized for those devices and probably doesn’t have drivers for their hardware, which means you might run into a bunch of issues. Having SteamOS integrated and officially supported with Valve’s stamp of approval would lend some legitimacy to these Steam Deck rivals.
GPD replied later in the same thread that Valve had contacted him “to consult if we are interested in the integrated SteamOS system” and said that “they can promote our products on the official Steam site, we will accept this cooperation, we think this cooperation will be the best.”
Valve told GamingonLinux that it was “excited to finally make SteamOS available for all devices, including laptops made by other companies,” but had no news to report regarding GPD. I’ve contacted Valve for more information on its SteamOS plans and will update if I receive a response.