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Valve announces Steam Machines, giving out 300 prototypes for free to users

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It’s the second of three exciting announcements from Valve this week; and just minutes ago, the company famous for the Steam game management platform just revealed their next big thing they are bringing into the living room: Steam Machines.

Valve is keeping mum on the specifications of their Steam Machines right now (which has been called Steam Box in the past) but assures that they will be available for purchase at the ‘beginning of 2014’ with “multiple SteamOS machines to choose from, made by different manufacturers”. In the meantime, they are also giving away (Free!) hardware prototypes to 300 lucky users. About 10% (30 users) will be chosen based on their past community contributions and beta participation, while the rest will be chosen randomly.

If you’re up for trying your chances at getting a Steam Machine and becoming a beta tester, you have up till October 25 to fulfil a short list of criteria listed on Valve’s Steam Machines page; basically having an active account, agreeing to terms and conditions and having played a game ‘console-style’ with a gamepad on Steam’s existing Big Picture mode.

Steam Machines will run Steam OS by default though Valve does mention that users are free to do almost anything with it, including installing their own OS and software and modifying hardware.

Valve has one final announcement to make as part of their 2014 Steam Universe expansion (into the living rooms of gamers) and that revelation will happen this Friday, September 27 at 10am Pacific Time/1pm EST/6pm GMT.

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