Continuing the coverage of Gabe Newell at Casual Connect, a gaming event in Seattle, Newell moved away from talking about the video games industry and Steam specifically. He talked about Windows 8, and wasn’t too excited.
There’s still a lot of caution over the Windows 8 release, including Gabe Newell
We’ve covered Windows 8 in depth, discussing the positives of the operating system (and the occasional negative). Gabe Newell, speaking at Casual Connect, in Seattle, described Windows 8 as a catastrophe.
Really? Yes: Newell said Windows 8 is a catastrophe for everyone in the PC market, and said Microsoft will lose top-end PC/OEMs, apparently because they’ll exit the market. He added margins will be destroyed for numerous people – he didn’t specify examples – and said therefore there should be alternatives for people. Like Linux.
It’s when Newell said, as we previously covered, the success of Valve has been on the open nature of PCs. Newell added Microsoft could be tempted to make Windows 8 a closed platform: Microsoft could look at what other companies – perhaps Apple, though Newell didn’t mentioned specific companies – have achieved with a closed ecosystem. Apple’s closed approach works well for the company because design is a key focus, and the company has been ahead of the curve when it comes to adopting technologies.
Conflict Of Interests
Newell is probably referring to the Windows Store, an app store for Windows. It marks a chance from programs being available from anywhere, but we’ll have to see how strict Microsoft is with allowing apps into the Windows Store.
There’s also the question over how it’ll impact Steam, and what games Microsoft will allow to go on sale in the Windows Store and Steam simultaneously. If Microsoft is ultra strict with titles, we could see users stick or switch back to Windows 7/earlier versions of Windows. The recent Steam Summer Sale has proved the popularity of the service.
Microsoft also takes up to 30% of the fee of Windows Store sales, whereas Valve takes a cut of every title sold through Steam. There’s also Xbox Live integration into Windows 8, so we could see Xbox Live Arcade titles coming to the platform. Those titles are also on Steam, so there’s a definite conflict between the two parties.