Here’s a video from MaximumPC, showing off the Alienware Steam Machine running the actual SteamOS system. So, the “real” SteamMachine, not a Windows-based one, equipped with the Steam Controller.
Apparently Alienware has partnered with Valve for over 3 years to develop their Steam Machine proposition.
As you can see in the video there are several upgrade paths for the base configuration (such as bigger hard drive, more memory) while the GPU is not upgradeable. In case you switch the hard-drive or want to switch from the ALpha Windows model to SteamOS, Alienware is currently thinking of how to actually upgrade to SteamOS in an easy way.
The Alienware folks have been apparently quite active to get support (i.e. games) for SteamOS from a number of publishers.
Myself and a few colleagues have been around the world talking to all of the major game publishers, […] sharing news about Alienware Steam Machine and our plans and how it will be our flagship product, getting those publishers excited to get their content [on it]…
Another thing to note, the Alienware representative mentioned that there are apparently many new titles to be announced for SteamOS in the course of this summer 2015, both from the back catalog as well as upcoming new titles. Exciting!
On top of the Steam Machine models, Alienware will continue to produce Windows-based models on top of the SteamOS version, but the system integration is supposed to be much better with SteamOS (and they plan to distribute the Steam Controller ONLY with the SteamOS version).
You can already pre-order the Steam Machine from Alienware on their website, or at Gamestop (US costumers). The first model sells at 450 dollars with an i3 CPU (desktop, not mobile version) and a 500Gb hard drive, while the most expensive model is equipped with an i5 CPU and 1TB harddrive for 750 USD. Too bad all of them come only with a nVidia 860M class of GPU, but that should still be able to run most games very well, at least in 2015.
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