Steam Deck 2: 10 Upgrades Gamers Want
The Steam Deck is a groundbreaking gaming device that allows gamers to play PC games on a handheld device.
It works like an ordinary computer, so you can use it for school and work. More importantly, we would likely see a Steam Deck 2 launch in the future.
Steam co-founder Gabe Newell confirmed in an interview with Edge Magazine that his company is developing a new handheld model, sparking rumors about its potential features.
10 Most Anticipated Steam Deck 2 features
- Longer battery life
- OLED display
- Improved haptic feedback
- Higher refresh rate options
- More accessibility options
- Extra M.2 slot for additional storage
- Mobile data support
- More USB and USB-C ports
- Added eGPU support
- More color options
1. Longer battery life
One of the major issues gamers have with the current Steam Deck model is the low battery life. They want to play the latest titles for more than two hours.
The Deck can run retro titles for three to four hours. However, running modern titles like Grand Theft Auto 5 drains the battery after two hours.
Casual players usually wouldn’t mind the smartphone-like battery life when waiting for their commute.
However, that is not enough for hardcore gamers who play graphics-intensive or competitive titles for four hours or more.
For example, exploring the vast open world of Elden Ring for a couple of hours is tough. Also, the short battery duration could ruin ranked games for Valorant and League of Legends.
The Steam Deck 2 could address these issues by having a larger battery or a stronger chipset.
The former could make the device too heavy, so the new model would likely get a better processor. Let’s wait and see which option Steam would pick.
2. OLED display
OLED (Organic Light-Emitting Diode) displays produce deeper blacks and contrast ratios for better on-screen images.
Nowadays, it is a staple for modern smartphones. Even the lackluster Nintendo Switch released an OLED model last year.
In contrast, the current Steam Deck model uses an LCD screen. It allows the machine to display decent graphics for most games but has issues like light bleed.
Consequently, fans expect the Steam Deck successor to have an OLED screen. It doesn’t need to offer higher resolution as it further strains the processor and shortens battery life.
Fortunately, Steam Deck designers Pierre-Loup Griffais and Lawrence Yang acknowledged the display as a major issue during an interview with The Verge.
Thus, we can expect it as a potential feature of the Steam Deck 2.
3. Improved haptic feedback
Gaming consoles have controllers that vibrate in response to in-game events and actions. For example, it helps Hogwarts Legacy players find Field Guides when casting the Revelio spell.
That feature is also known as haptic feedback, and the Steam Deck has it too. Unfortunately, the current version only uses it for touchpad scrolling.
Casual players typically wouldn’t mind, but experienced gamers may find it jarring. Consequently, many customers expect Steam to expand its use.
4. Higher refresh rate options
Refresh rate is the number of times your monitor can produce a new image. A high refresh rate enables numerous frames per second or FPS.
The latter counts how many frames your graphics card can transmit as frames to your screen every second.
Nowadays, most players require 60 FPS or more, so they want their refresh rates to be as high as their graphics card limit.
Some people lower the refresh rate when playing old titles to save battery life.
The current version of the Steam Deck only supports a limited range of refresh rates. Hopefully, the Steam Deck 2 offer that feature soon.
5. More accessibility options
Accessibility options continue to expand in video games, helping more types of people enjoy them.
For example, you can change the colors for character dialogue in the Last of Us PlayStation 5 remake. Also, you can make subtitles and menu text larger.
The latter is especially important for handheld consoles due to their small screens, but the Steam Deck doesn’t have it yet.
6. Extra M.2 slot for additional storage
Video games continue to demand higher software specs as graphics cards and other components improve.
The Steam Deck has an M.2 storage slot that lets users upgrade its internal storage. As a result, it lets your handheld console keep up with the latest games.
However, you must remove its preinstalled unit beforehand, so upgrading the M.2 internal storage can be a hassle.
The Steam Deck 2 could provide a solution by having a separate slot for another M.2 storage card so that users could immediately install new ones.
7. Mobile data support
Smartphones let you wirelessly connect to the internet via Wi-Fi or mobile data. The latter involves a link provided by a telecommunications company.
The Steam Deck can connect via Wi-Fi but not mobile data. The latter would make playing online more convenient, especially for multiplayer games like Fortnite.
Aside from mobile data, the Steam Deck 2 could have satellite internet support. After all, Starlink continues to expand that service to more countries.
8. More USB and USB-C ports
The Steam Deck works like a laptop because it lets you connect accessories like a PC monitor, mouse, and keyboard.
The current version has three USB-A 3.1, a DisplayPort, an Ethernet, and an HDMI port. Users must purchase a dock from Steam or third-party companies to have more.
If the Steam Deck 2 gets extra built-in USB ports, it will become a more versatile device. For example, it would enable users to charge the Deck while connected to another gadget.
9. Added eGPU support
Some PC gamers upgrade their computers by linking them to an eGPU or External Graphics Processing Unit.
Unlike ordinary graphics cards, you connect this to your PC via a USB-C port, boosting visuals and performance.
I put this near the bottom of the list because most gamers don’t use eGPUs. Instead, they would rather upgrade by swapping their graphics cards with beefier ones.
However, it seems suitable for a handheld device like the Steam Deck 2. Boosting its performance via USB-enabled eGPU is convenient for casual and hardcore gamers.
10. More color options
Most gadgets are black nowadays, so people try various ways to add vibrance and personality to their devices. For example, smartphone users get phone cases.
The Nintendo Switch offers a few choices for the colors of its Joy-Con controllers. Also, it had limited edition designs based on Zelda and Pokemon.
In contrast, the Steam Deck is black only. Perhaps we could get a red or blue Steam Deck 2. Maybe it could offer more designs based on popular video games, movies, or other themes.
Various experts confirm that a Steam Deck 2 is in the works. As a result, fans have speculated on its potential features, such as the ones we discussed.
However, Steam Deck company Valve has not confirmed other details about the device, such as its release date, price, and specs.
Follow Inquirer USA for more updates regarding the Steam Deck 2 and other tech trends.