The Steam Machine is quietly dying

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Do you remember Steam Machines? The high-concept idea first floated by Valve in 2012 was built around an affordable semi-standardized computer running a Linux-based ValveOS which would give customers an easier entry into PC gaming. It was also meant to be a sort of bulwark against what some in the industry saw as over-aggressive attempts by Microsoft to turn Windows into a walled software garden cutting Steam out of the future.

Steam Machines launched in 2015 as offerings from various hardware manufacturers. Along with the Steam Controller amd the Steam Link, some pundits saw a potential Valve end-run around Microsoft. Alas, it was not to be. Muddled messaging, controversial pricing, and a campaign that never overcame the inertia of the market hobbled the effort before it ever really began.

Valve has quietly taken the Steam Machines page from the front of the store client, and they’ve removed the listing under the hardware dropdown. Although you can get to the page via a direct link, potential buyers without may never find it on their own. A Steam death sentence for sure.

The kicker is that the catalog alteration may have occurred on March 20th. It took the fansite, Gaming on Linux to notice the change a week later! A sad indicator of just how few people cared.