It seems like Valve, somewhat reluctantly, supports the Right to Repair movement. It’s probably the company’s deep PC gaming roots. Either way, the game sales and sometimes hardware giant behind Steam and Half-Life posted a surprising video on its YouTube channel today.
In the video, a disembodied pair of hands shows the audience exactly how to open up the Steam Deck, and even how to remove specific parts.
Valve Shows How to Open the Steam Deck for (Potentially Dangerous) Self-Repair
The host goes into plentiful detail about this process, even naming the screws and describing the risks of removing them. He also notes that, sometime in the future, there will be some official resource for components such as replacement analogue sticks or SSD drives.
But despite the willingness to expose the Steam Deck’s guts, the video is also littered with suggestions to not do it.
In a nutshell, Valve is making an attempt to be consumer friendly, but also warning potential customers that there’s a lot of risk involved with self-repair. The components inside the Steam Deck are often customized, and very tightly assembled together.
A person without the right knowhow could easily brick the unit. The video also warns that in a worse case scenario, cracking into hardware outside of official support could be painful. Granted, that’s largely due to the Lithium-Ion battery inside, which we figure most people know isn’t something you tinker around with casually.
Still, it’s a good ass-covering bit of information to include. A fascinating clip of impact stress-testing on a Steam Deck is also paired with a warning that you have to pry the Steam Deck open after removing the screws, which inherently drops the machine’s physical integrity to some degree.
What do you think about this video? Is Valve approaching this sensitive and very much legally recent topic? Or is there something about it that feels off to you? Let us know your opinions down in the comments, on Facebook or on Twitter!