Nvidia and Valve are keen to make Team Green’s GeForce Now streaming service work better on the Steam Deck for those who do cloud gaming on portable devices (yes, there’s a reason you might want to – we’ll back there).
as computer gamer (opens in a new tab) According to reports, this comes from Andrew Fear, Nvidia’s director of product management for GeForce Now, who told our sister site: “Today there are no native apps on Steam Deck. Use the Chromium browser to make it work. I’d say Nvidia and Valve, I think we’re all interested in making [GeForce Now on Steam Deck] better one. But we don’t have any announcements about native apps on Steam. “
As Fear observed, right now if you want to stream games with GeForce Now on Steam Deck, you need to do it in a Chromium browser like Chrome or Edge.
However, as you can probably guess, running in the browser isn’t the best experience with GeForce Now – it makes some things very clunky, especially when it comes to the interface and game controls – while the native app Will represent a big step forward for Steam Deck.
Analysis: Nvidia and Valve, the Steam Dream Team?
The problem here is that Fear’s statement is very vague. While it’s said that both Nvidia and Valve want to make GeForce Now a better experience on Steam Deck, there’s no word on how that’s going to happen – and more importantly, the clarification that there’s no native app in the works feels less positive . It’s just a hint that things will improve, not anything concrete.
While it’s nice to see the signal coming, there’s really not much to get excited about just yet. Whether there will be a native Linux app for GeForce Now, well, we’re not sure about that, shall we say. It’s a minority gaming platform to say the least (1.4% of all gamers on Steam as of the last Valve hardware survey), and unless Steam Deck (running Linux, SteamOS to be precise) really becomes a big thing in the future, then This may not be worth the effort in terms of the development time and cost currently required.
As for why you might want to stream games with GeForce Now on the Steam Deck? Well, for starters, it’s a way to save battery life, and running GeForce Now in the browser is far less demanding than getting Steam Deck to run certain games natively. Of course, demanding games can absolutely kill a handheld’s battery, and streaming GeForce Now can get you hours of battery life (reported to be around 5 hours, based on reviews we’ve seen).
It also allows to play some games that are not compatible with Steam Deck and will not work at all. This includes games with anti-cheat features that don’t play well with the Proton Compatibility Layer that Steam Deck relies on. Also, besides non-functional games, there may be other games that are glitching or not performing well on the Deck, and streaming these games may also be a better experience (while saving battery).
As ever, the tradeoff with streaming is that the smoothness of gameplay you’ll experience depends on the speed of your internet connection.