Steam’s rarely updated Big Picture mode from 2012 is soon to be replaced by the Steam Deck’s UI, nine years after its launch.
The demise of Steam’s Big Picture mode was revealed by Valve employee austinp_valve who responded to a question asking about the future of Big Picture mode now that the Steam Deck and its swanky new UI has been revealed.
“Yes, we are replacing Big Picture with the new UI from Deck,” austinp_valve flatly stated, much to the delight of fans replying to the post, who have been stuck with the ageing software for nine years.
While the replacement is planned, austinp_valve went on to say that “we don’t have an ETA to share yet though.” It’s likely that we’ll see the change sometime around the launch of the Steam Deck, although this has since been pushed back to 2022 for many models of the handheld due to manufacturing constraints.
If you’ve not heard of it before, Steam’s Big Picture mode is a console-esque UI that could be enabled through Steam. This UI was far easier to use with a controller compared to Steam’s usual interface, however it felt a lot to be desired.
Even after being used in Steam’s ill-fated Steam Machines, as well as the Steam Deck PC streaming device, the Big Picture mode never saw widespread adoption, leaving the UI without many updates to keep it relevant.