Valve’s got some big plans for Steam, so today, they’ve announced a brand new, Linux-based OS dubbed SteamOS. SteamOS will have 4 main functions: in-home streaming, family sharing, entertainment media (music/TV/movies), and family options.
In-home streaming will allow users to send files from their PC or Mac over the internet and on to their televisions. As of right now, the way in which this will be achieved has yet to be announced, but one could probably guess either a wireless dongle or Steambox integration would be utilized.
For the media aspect, Valve has been reportedly working with various major players, which presumably is probably Netflix and Hulu Plus.
As for the family sharing/options aspect, this one is pretty much self-explanatory: you’ll be able to manage multiple accounts within your household to both restrict your kids from going into games like Grand Theft Auto V, or possibly to share games between family members.
Although these 4 components are a major part of SteamOS, these features are also being planned for the actual Steam client itself. Who knows? Perhaps we’ll be running dual OS systems (Windows/SteamOS or Mac/SteamOS) in the future! No release dates have been revealed just yet though, although Valve is planning 2 more major announcements this week.