Steam launches Big Picture beta
New mode of Steam UI designed for display on televisions
Posted by Alex 'SpectralShock' V on Sep 10, 2012 - 5:39pm EST (Sep 10, 2012 17:39)
Valve has announced the beta release of a major update to the Steam gaming platform called Big Picture.
Big Picture mode lets gamers access the software via a TV as Steam now displays a new full-screen user interface optimized for readability and interaction. Big Picture has been designed to be used with a traditional game controller, while also fully supporting keyboard and mouse input.
Steam gamers can try Big Picture by connecting their PC or Mac to a TV, typically with a single HDMI cable. Access to the complete Steam store is included, as is the Steam Community. In addition to their complete library of Steam games, each user's cloud files, Steam Workshop content, account information and preferences will be accessible automatically in the new mode.
"PC gaming continues to be the leading edge of entertainment, whether it's social gaming, MMOs, graphics hardware, free-to-play, or competitive gaming," said Gabe Newell, president of Valve. "With Big Picture for Steam, we are trying to do our part to give customers and developers what they want - their games, everywhere, optimized for the environment in which they are playing."
Big Picture also includes a new web browser designed for televisions and game controllers. It is accessible from anywhere within the Big Picture UI, and even while playing Steam games on a TV. It supports Big Picture's new method of typing with a game controller, which is useful for entering URLs, filling out forms, chatting, and other functions.