Valve president Gabe Newell has said the company is working on a living-room friendly PC, and that he believes more manufacturers will do the same in the near future.

Steam Big Picture

Speaking to Kotaku journalist Jason Schreider, on the red carpet of the 2012 Videogame Awards, Newell said that Valve is now working on its own hardware:

"I think in general that most customers and most developers are gonna find that [the PC is] a better environment for them," said Newell "cause they won't have to split the world into thinking about 'why are my friends in the living room, why are my video sources in the living room different from everyone else?' So in a sense we hopefully are gonna unify those environments.

"We'll do it but we also think other people will as well...The nice thing about a PC is a lot of different people can try out different solutions, and customers can find the ones that work best for them."

In September 2012, Valve launched "Big Picture" for its Steam distribution platform, which alters the Steam interface to better suit users who have their PC connected to a television rather than a conventional monitor. Newell said the reaction to Big Picture had been "stronger than expected."

Valve is also working on a new game engine called Source 2, which is expected to power the long-awaited and still unconfirmed Half-Life 3, which the company has been rumoured to have been working on for the past five years. Newell told Kotaku that Source 2 will create "some interesting opportunities on the game side" and that a PC created by Valve would be a "very controlled environment":

"Well certainly our hardware will be a very controlled environment," he said. "If you want more flexibility, you can always buy a more general purpose PC. For people who want a more turnkey solution, that's what some people are really going to want for their living room."

Valve's Steam service now has more than six million concurrent users. A beta test for Valve's hardware is expected to begin in 2013, with Valve employee Jeri Ellsworth telling Engadget that the goal is "to make Steam games more fun to play in your living room."