The Valve Steam Link application, which allows computer users to transfer their Steam games from a PC to an Apple TV, iPhone or iPad, is now available to users after being rejected by the Apple App Store iOS more than a year ago. With this application, users can play their Steam games on Apple devices, even though they actually work and perform on high-performance PCs as long as they have high-speed local Wi-Fi networks.
Although Valve announced the Android and iOS applications on May 9 last year after the Apple App Store approval process, the iOS application was withdrawn the following day. A statement issued by Valve explained this with a “business conflict” which Apple said was ignored by their original review team. The conflict at issue comes from the fact that users can use the application to buy games via Steam.
In many cases, Apple has refused the approval of the application, which allows users to make purchases without going through the App Store, giving Apple a percentage of transactions. Valve said that he had told Apple that the Steam Link application serves as a remote desktop tool with many features in the App Store, and that these users actually make purchases through the Steam client desktop. But Apple rejects this argument. Then, the company said it had worked with Valve to remove the application.
Now the Steam Link application is finally available for iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and Apple TV. However, in the approved version, users cannot buy Steam. It is not clear why the approval process takes a full year. This application is now available for Android for a while. Steam users need 5 GHz Wi-Fi, and Valve recommends that your Steam computer be connected to a wireless router with an Ethernet cable. This application works on the local network at home or in the user’s office.
Steam Link requires an iPhone or iPad with iOS 11 or higher and a computer (Windows or Linux) or Mac with Steam. Users can play games with the Steam Controller or use a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse. There are also many certified iPhone / iPad accessories, including game controllers. According to Valve, the target quality for streaming is 1080p at 60 fps, but with a strong enough PC and strong network connectivity, it is possible to stream 4K at 60 fps. The company has developed low latency, special network protocols and uses H.264 video compression to send game visuals over the network.
Steam Link is available for free. Valve sells a small decoder named Steam Link, which allows the same way to stream games to TV, but since then the product has been downloaded. Users can also download the Steam Link software to work with Raspberry Pi. Valve also recently announced Steam Link Anywhere, which allows users to download games over the internet from anywhere.