Valve launches Steam Link Anywhere beta

March 15, 2019 | 10:40

Tags: #game-streaming #microconsole #steam #steam-in-home-streaming #steam-link #steam-link-anywhere

Companies: #valve

Valve has launched a beta for Steam Link Anywhere, the logical extension to its Steam In-Home Streaming which removes the 'in-home' requirement and allows gamers to stream from anywhere to anywhere.

Launched in May 2014, Valve's Steam In-Home Streaming was designed to allow a gamer to run any Steam title on a powerful desktop and stream it to a less-powerful device anywhere in the home. Initial compatibility with PCs running the Steam client software was expanded by the creation of a dedicated low-cost microconsole dubbed the Steam Link in 2015, pre-installation on selected smart TVs in 2016, and finally Android and iOS mobile devices in 2018.

In all these cases, however, Steam In-Home Streaming has one major disadvantage, and it's right there in the name: The streaming can only happen in the home, on a local area network - preferably wired, Valve's recommendations explain, to prevent bandwidth starvation and latency issues.

Steam Link Anywhere, by contrast, has no such restriction: With a name that again leaves little to the imagination, Steam Link Anywhere effectively replaces Steam In-Home Streaming and allows for games and other software to be streamed from any network to any other network - including, potentially, mobile devices on a cellular network.

Available now in beta form, there are a few caveats to note before forging ahead and trying the service. First and foremost is that users need 'a good upload speed' on the network hosting the stream and 'a good network connection' on the one receiving it - neither of which has been quantified in terms of minimal speeds or latencies by Valve. A bigger one is that the service is currently available exclusively on the dedicated Steam Link microconsole - a somewhat odd decision, given that the Steam Link was discontinued in November last year.

For those who own a Steam Link device, details on pairing it with a remote computer for Steam Link Anywhere use can be found on the Steam Link forum.

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