Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Valve puts a valley between itself and Xi3 Piston 'Steam Box'

Valve puts a valley between itself and Xi3 Piston 'Steam Box'

Gaming giant Valve has distanced itself from the unofficial Steam Box - the Xi3 Piston PC.

While Valve first showed off the Xi3 Piston at CES 2013 as a prototype for the Steam Box gaming system, the firm is now saying that its relationship with Xi3 is kaput.

"Valve began some exploratory work with Xi3 last year, but currently has no involvement in any product of theirs," Valve marketing director Doug Lombardi told Eurogamer.

Valve's clarification comes on the heels of Xi3 announcing pre-orders for the Piston starting at $ 1000 (around UK£670, AU$ 977) with U.S. customers able to shave off $ 100 (UK£67, AUD$ 97) by pre-ordering before March 17.

Piston running out of Steam

The Piston's biggest claim to fame is packing a PC into a small console-like shell.

It features a 3.2GHz AMD Quad Core A10 processor, 8GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD, with the option to upgrade to a 256GB or 512GB SSD at a premium cost.

The Piston is the first unofficial Steam Box to be announced, though it won't arrive until late 2013.

Valve, meanwhile, is creating its own official Steam Box gaming PC, which company CEO Gabe Newell recently said will start to appear in prototype form in the next few months.

Perhaps the Piston's price is part of the reason why Valve is distancing itself from the Xi3 Piston, or maybe it merely wants to focus on its own branding efforts. Either way, it will be very interesting to see what the official Steam Box cooks up for us later this year.

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//PART 2