It’s been a few years since the idea of Chrome OS supporting Steam was originally floated. Since 2020, we’ve seen a few mentions here and there in the Chromium Gerrit, but it seems that integration could be around the corner. As spotted by 9to5Google, Google has implemented a list of the first Chromebooks that will support Steam on Chrome OS, but you shouldn’t get too excited.
- Volta – Acer Chromebook 514 (CB514-1H)
- Volet – Acer Chromebook 515
- Voxel – Acer Chromebook Spin 713 (CP713-3W)
- Delbin – ASUS Chromebook Flip CX5 (CX5500)
- Drobit – ASUS Chromebook CX9 (CX9400)
- Elemi – HP Pro c640 G2 Chromebook
- Lindar – Unknown/unreleased Chromebook from Lenovo
The list isn’t all that surprising given that Acer and ASUS lead the way when it comes to offering some of the best Chromebooks and Chrome OS experiences out there. But the 9to5Google team also uncovered some of the minimum spec requirements that Google will implement whenever Steam support finally arrives. These include the need for Intel’s 11th-gen Core i5 or Core i7 processor, and at least 7GB of RAM. This puts even Google’s own Pixelbook Go out of the running if you were hoping to play your favorite Steam games on a Chromebook. Perhaps this will be the push that Google needs to at least update the internals of the Pixelbook Go, if it doesn’t introduce a new Chromebook entirely.
Gaming on Chromebooks has been a mixed bag, despite being able to download and play many of the best Android games thanks to the Play Store. But many of the high-end Chromebooks offer enough power, even without a dedicated GPU, to play Steam games as they either match or out-spec many popular Windows laptops.
It also appears that Google and Steam developers are not the only ones working on the source code for this project. NVIDIA developers have also been found submitting new code to the Borealis project, which can mean that either we’ll see a Chromebook complete with an RTX GPU or NVIDIA has something else planned for expanding its reach to Chromebook and Chrome OS users.