Despite the fact that Valve has the resources and means to enter the hardware market, the company has continually denied rumors that they would ever produce a console. But a job listing on their official site suggests otherwise.
Recently, a posting for an “industrial engineer” showed up on the jobs section of Valve’s main page, fueling suspicion that the corporation has some kind of device or console in the works.
Specifically, the job listing’s description makes a direct reference to a “void” in the marketplace that hasn’t been filled by computer hardware, citing a lack of “innovation” among other industry issues:
Valve is traditionally a software company. Open platforms like the PC and Mac are important to us, as they enable us and our partners to have a robust and direct relationship with customers. We’re frustrated by the lack of innovation in the computer hardware space though, so we’re jumping in. Even basic input, the keyboard and mouse, haven’t really changed in any meaningful way over the years. There’s a real void in the marketplace, and opportunities to create compelling user experiences are being overlooked.
Exactly what “we’re jumping in” really means is up to interpretation, but if any company has the developer contracts and capital to introduce a new gaming hardware platform into the market, it’s Valve.
As the open-source, Android-based Ouya console has shown, the gaming industry isn’t immune to new ideas in the console space, even if the idea is a niche product. It seems Valve has something big up their sleeves, and they mostly likely won’t even need a Kickstarter fundraiser to get this mystery project up-and-running.