Steam Deck engineers promise improved display and battery life

Valve’s Steam Deck has disrupted the PC gaming market in many ways, but they don’t plan on putting all of their eggs in the performance basket, and rightfully so.

steam deck
The Steam Deck's 60 Hz IPS display offers an enjoyable experience, but engineers want to take it to the next level

Less than a year after the release of the first generation Steam Deck, we're already hearing rumblings about V2. While we're far from the launch of a second-generation version of the popular handheld console, it didn’t stop Steam Deck designers from teasing the public.

In a recent interview with The Verge, Steam Deck designers Lawrence Yang and Pierre-Loup Griffais voiced their opinion about the future of the product. Talking about the Steam Deck and Valve’s products in general, they mentioned battery life and the display are their focus for the handheld console moving forward.

Following in the steps of Nintendo and their revamped Nintendo Switch which features an OLED display is a good idea. It had a major impact in terms of sales and user experience, but what users are curious about is performance. So far the Steam Deck has held its own, proving to be worthy of its description as a handheld PC gaming console.

In the interview, Griffais further elaborated on why they aren’t planning major changes and improvements to its performance capabilities:

Right now the fact that all the Steam Decks can play the same games and that we have one target for users to understand what kind of performance level to expect when you’re playing and for developers to understand what to target... there’s a lot of value in having that one spec.

I think we’ll opt to keep the one performance level for a little bit longer, and only look at changing the performance level when there is a significant gain to be had.

steam deck
The Steam Deck offers you a high quality gaming experience everywhere you go

The pair of designers also added that a Steam Controller 2 was also in their plans, but that they were focusing on Steam Deck right now. This makes complete sense, considering that the Steam Deck is their newest hardware project. The console has proven itself adequate for running demanding titles like the Remastered version of Marvel’s Spiderman.

Despite its compact design and limited battery capabilities, it can also handle emulating Xbox 360 games and we’re promised support for next-gen console exclusives like Returnal.

With the console already supporting more than half of Steam’s top 100 games, users should be ecstatic to hear that Valve is also working on anti-cheat support compatibility for titles like Fall Guys and Halo MCC. And while Valve is unlikely to juice up the graphical prowess of this Steam Deck generation, improvements shouldn't be ruled out if the benefits warrant it.

In the meantime, Valve has spent most of 2022 focusing on completing the accumulated Steam Deck pre-orders. So much so that as of October 2022, you can purchase one without having to make a reservation. The waiting lines might be cut, but the price still holds for the next-gen console. The 64GB model is still commanding the equivalent of $500 after taxes in most markets, with the 256 GB version going for $700 and the 512 GB model sells for of $850.

This might sound like a huge investment, but it’s the price gamers have to pay for carrying a fully functional PC gaming setup in their back pocket.

Fingers crossed, a more powerful Steam Deck will be out not long after Nintendo releases its Switch successor.

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Scott Kostov

Scott Kostov // Articles: 129

A passion for writing and gaming has propelled Scott down the path of content creation. When he isn't scouring every known source on the internet for information, he's a track addict vibing to music in the countryside of sunny Macedonia. Link up with Scott on Twitter and Steam.
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