While we have already seen something similar by way of Razer's Edge and Edge Pro, startup developer SteamBoy Machine Team is currently working on something lighter for PC gaming on the go: the SteamBoy.
As the name implies, the device looks like a combination of the PlayStation Vita and the Steam controller. There's a touchpad on each side of the rectangular screen along with eight action face buttons (directional, ABXY), four trigger buttons and two additional action buttons on the back of the device.
SteamBoy will also run Valve's SteamOS platform, which should keep the overall cost to customers somewhat low given that there is no licensing fee for SteamOS. The team indicated that the final specs will feature a good balance between cost and performance, allowing gamers to play the majority of PC games on Steam.
"I think people will get shocked by SteamBoy potential and possibilities," said SteamBoy Machine Team. "SteamBoy is the first device that allows [you] to play Steam games on the go, you will keep playing your favorite games at the bus, the office, the school or the doctor's waiting room."
As for the specs, the team hints that SteamBoy may have a quad-core CPU, 4 GB of RAM, 32 GB of internal storage and a 5-inch 16:9 touchscreen. The first version is expected to launch in 2015 with Wi-Fi (likely Wireless AC) and 3G connectivity.
"SteamBoy won't be as powerful as other announced Steam Machines in the same way [the] Nintendo 3DS or PS Vita performance is not comparable to Wii U or PlayStation 4," a representative admitted in an emailed statement. "However, it will be possible to play the majority of current games in Steam."
What will be interesting to see is whether or not Valve Software will make the SteamBoy Machine team choose a different name, and not use the Steam name and logo. There may be an agreement already in place, so this possible infringement is just speculation. The website clearly states "Steam name and logo are property of Valve Corporation," and that "all trademarks are property of their respective owners."
If the specs are decent enough to play Skyrim on the default medium settings, would you purchase this device? We're hoping that the console will have HDMI output just in case the gamer wants to connect to a larger screen. Nvidia's Android-powered SHIELD already does this, turning the portable controller-like device into a console.