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Playtron's Distro is an Upcoming SteamOS Challenger for Linux Gaming

Is Playtron's PlaytronOS going to be the next evolution after Valve's SteamOS and Steam Deck? Sounds exciting!

Gaming on Linux just gets better every year, doesn't it? We are almost at the end of the first quarter of 2024, and we now have a new startup that aims to disrupt the Linux gaming space.

Playtron is a new venture led by Kirk McMaster of Cyanogen fame, that has teased PlaytronOS, a Linux distribution tailored for “powerful handheld gaming PCs… and beyond”; they also aim to ship 5G-equipped Playtron-native devices across the globe in 2025.

Let's see what they have to offer.

Suggested Read 📖

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Playtron: What to Expect?

We first start off with PlaytronOS; In conversation with The Verge, McMaster stated that PlaytronOS will be based on Fedora Silverblue, and that Hackers would find it tough to bypass anti-cheat on popular multiplayer games such as Fortnite/Roblox, thanks to its immutable nature.

The OS is set to support both x86 and ARM CPU architectures, with claims of PlaytronOS being made available for Laptops, PCs, TVs, and even Cars in the coming years. 😳

Sounds like Valve should consider making the new Steam OS available for other architectures? If not, maybe PlaytronOS could steal the thunder? ⚡

They also intend to provide integration for “every game store” (read Steam, Epic Games, GOG, etc.) and many third-party integrations (not sure which ones). There were also mentions of something called “Playtron Select” that would enable any publisher to get their games published directly to Playtron.

To carry out such a massive task, they have employed developers from many existing open-source projects such as Heroic Games Launcher, ChimeraOS, Box86, and a few others to bolster the development of PlaytronOS.

As for when you can expect PlaytronOS to debut; Later this year for Steam Deck and other handheld PCs is what the official website mentions, so do keep an eye out over there.

Interestingly, Playtron is working on a public alpha release of PlaytronOS to be introduced in the next two months, so that people can contribute to the code, request new features, and more.

Steam Deck's Competitor is a Good Idea!

To complement the OS, Playtron confirmed that they are in talks with many OEMs and mobile operators to get their platform into the hands of gamers around the world sometime in 2025. Moreover, they are collaborating with Ayaneo, a popular portable gaming console brand, to bring the native Playtron device by the end of 2024.

All this is backed by a sizeable $10 million in funding with investors such as Samsung Next, Sui, Factor Capital, and a few others. So far, it does look promising, but, we will reserve our judgement until we see some results.

The company will also be the attending GDC for a special event with Samsung Next and Silicon Valley Bank on March 20, 2024, where they will be discussing the evolution of handheld gaming with speakers from the industry. We can hope for them to showcase early builds of PlaytronOS in action there.

You can attend the event by RSVPing to it, just remember that it is an in-person event, and registration is mandatory.

💬 Are you excited about this? Would you try out PlaytronOS if it were offered for your handheld?

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