Skip to main content

Valve Unveils Big Picture Mode, Now in Beta

While there won't be a "Steam box" any time soon, you'll still be able to experience your Steam library on your TV with Steam's Big Picture Mode.

Valve released a trailer giving a few details of Big Picture Mode's beta.

At first glimpse, it seems that Steam's Big Picture Mode, which can be accessed with a simple click on an appropriately labeled transparent bubble, simplifies Steam's interface to be tile-like (think Xbox Live) to be more easily navigable with a controller.

Big Picture Mode will retain all of Steam's features, including the browser, which will feature tabbed browsing and cloud-saved favorites. Typing with Big Picture Mode has—thankfully—been simplified. Shunning the QWERTY layout, typing on Steam in Big Picture Mode involves the Daisywheel, where four letters are assigned to the four face buttons. Every letter is grouped into four and displayed in a wheel, and each grouping can be cycled between using the d-pad or analog sticks.

For more details, go to Steam's official page for Big Picture Mode.

  • NuclearShadow
    Do want!
    Reply
  • billgatez
    How long until consoles copy the keyboard layout.
    Reply
  • chuckydb
    Works nice...
    Althought, the web browser wasn't doing well on youtube...
    Better than nothing!!!!!
    Reply
  • vittau
    I've been using Xpadder, but I suppose this will work a lot better. :-)
    Reply
  • blader15sk8
    Don't care. Bring on native Linux support already!
    Reply
  • aftcomet
    FFFFFFFFFFFIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIINAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLYYYYYYYYYYYYY

    Does this mean gaming will be easier now on HDTVs? That's the only thing I like about consoles tbh. The ease of using them with an HDTV. With an HPTC I always have to play with the DPI and whatnot.

    Reply
  • helltag
    Typical Valve and doing a half-assed job of Steam.

    I do interface design work for a living (almost a year working from home, woo!) and was underwhelmed by the big picture mode beta. I hoped from all the talk of wanting to simplify and comfort the pc user that they would have put in a decent effort, guess not..

    Gabe can cry all he wants about windows and Microsoft, but I think he should consider crying over his own company and it's lack of progress or innovation in regards to Steam. Either they are too big and relaxing at the top, or they're work model of doing whatever you want fails for boring features. Code monkey's are important for this, you need a shit-kicker to do low work for highly requested features like the Scheduler system for scheduled downloads! I mean it's not like that hasn't been requested for over a decade right? Who is honestly going to pick that task over adding their favourite new gameplay mechanic to Source?

    If I wasn't juggling contracts and working on my next game I would create my vision of Steam, I was hoping Big Picture would implement some of my ideas so now that it's clear it's not I might try to clear time later this year.

    Jerry.
    Reply
  • Bloob
    This is why Valve doesn't like Win8/RT, because Microsoft's store would be in direct competition in the living room ( Win8/RT works pretty well in HTPC ). I'd even say that the next XBox is going to use WinRT.
    Reply
  • joytech22
    helltagTypical Valve and doing a half-assed job of Steam. If I wasn't juggling contracts and working on my next game I would create my vision of Steam, I was hoping Big Picture would implement some of my ideas so now that it's clear it's not I might try to clear time later this year.Jerry.
    Honestly, until you or someone else can provide a better service Steam will suffice.
    Improvement doesn't happen by running ones mouth, but by taking action.


    This is just one small step for Steam and their generally well-received services.
    Reply
  • neiroatopelcc
    Oh no more controller crap! hope the rest of the industry doesn't copy that part of the idea!
    Already have too many steam games that are unplayable because of being controller based even on the PC version
    Reply