Steam on Chromebooks is prepared for testing, comes with steep necessities

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<i>Portal 2</i> is one of the games Google recommends trying.
Enlarge / Portal 2 is likely one of the video games Google recommends attempting.

Google

After prematurely asserting that Steam on Chromebooks was prepared for testing final week, Google is making the discharge official right this moment. The alpha model of Steam on Chrome OS is at present obtainable within the Chrome OS 14583.0.0 Dev channel, as introduced through a put up in Google’s Chrome Builders Group.

Not all Chromebooks will be capable of run Steam, nonetheless. Google mentioned solely the next machines can strive the alpha:

  • Acer Chromebook 514 (CB514-1W)
  • Acer Chromebook 515 (CB515-1W)
  • Acer Chromebook Spin 713 (CP713-3W)
  • Asus Chromebook Flip CX5 (CX5500)
  • Asus Chromebook CX9 (CX9400)
  • HP Professional c640 G2 Chromebook
  • Lenovo 5i-14 Chromebook

“As a result of many video games have excessive efficiency calls for, we’ve targeted our efforts to date on a set of gadgets the place extra video games can run effectively,” Google mentioned.

Chromebooks additionally have to hit particular necessities to run Steam, together with an Intel Eleventh-gen Core i5 CPU, Intel Iris Xe graphics, and 8GB of RAM. Google made it clear that utilizing a supported machine with a lesser configuration—corresponding to one that features an i3 CPU or 4GB of RAM—won’t lower it. The truth is, you might have considered trying increased specs to run some video games, like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim Particular Version and The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt, two video games Google claimed work effectively with the alpha.

These necessities restrict Steam on Chrome OS to the pricier tier of Chromebooks. You may at present discover HP’s G2 Chromebook for $849 and Acer’s Chromebook 514 for $780 or its Chromebook 515 for $772.

Asus' Chromebook CX9 (pictured) has either an i3 or i7 CPU, with the latter model costing $1,150.
Enlarge / Asus’ Chromebook CX9 (pictured) has both an i3 or i7 CPU, with the latter mannequin costing $1,150.

it is unclear if the huge variety of Chromebooks with chips like Intel Pentiums and Arm-based choices will be capable of be a part of the occasion when the function is finalized.

Along with the above titles, Google named 48 different PC video games that work on Chrome OS, together with Cuphead, Divinity: Authentic Sin 2, Fallout 4, Hades, Half-Life 2, Left 4 Lifeless 2, Portal 2, Sid Meier’s Civilization V, Stardew Valley, and Tekken 7. 

Past the alpha, Google can be beginning to experiment with supporting variable refresh charges in Chrome OS, which might be anticipated to struggle display screen tearing in supported shows, About Chromebooks reported Friday.

Prepare for bugs

Google mentioned it would not advocate attempting Steam on Chrome OS on a “Chromebook that you just depend on for work, faculty, or different every day actions.”

Count on “crashes, efficiency regressions,” and bugs, Google mentioned. As that is an alpha, “something can break,” Google mentioned, highlighting the Dev channel’s “inherent instability” and the truth that Steam on Chrome OS is a piece in progress.

Among the many anticipated bugs are “efficiency and scaling points” at resolutions increased than 1080p.

“It’s early days, however we’re hoping the optimization that comes from gathering consumer suggestions helps us construct a extra polished expertise at launch additional down the road,” VP of Chrome OS John Maletis mentioned in an announcement.

Ars Technica could earn compensation for gross sales from hyperlinks on this put up by means of affiliate applications.

Itemizing picture by Getty / SOPA Photographs



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