At the University of Texas’ LBJ School of Public Affairs, Gabe Newell gave a lecture to a class about a number of lessons and problems in the world of Valve, the company Newell co-founded and runs as managing director.
In between several different areas, Newell stumbled upon the Steam Box, a new hardware console that will work with all devices to connect you to Steam. With Big Picture mode, it is simpler than ever to port Steam onto the TV.
Newell said that the biggest threat to the success of the Steam Box isn’t the console developers Xbox or Playstation, but Apple. Valve’s big vision is to enter the living room in a completely seamless way, without any interruptions or blockades.
Apple may be the biggest blockade in the way for Valve, with enough capital to enter into the living room without much of a problem. While the console companies may still be big, Newell says that with Apple’s winning form factor, they are sure to make an entrance everyone will buy into.
In the past year, we have seen a lot of new consoles from indie developers, including the Ouya, Gamestick and from Nvidia Project Shield. Valve will be releasing their Steam Box, along with other manufacturers take on the Steam experience.
If Apple jump into the living room, either with a TV or a console, it will be catastrophic in Newell’s view, to the industry. Apple has a closed gate market, and with the console and TV market just springing to openness, it could be the end for all these indie startups.