The Steam Deck officially launches on February 25th, but that doesn’t mean your fiery little hands will be holding one when the big day rolls around. Instead, Valve will start sending out emails to people who have pre-ordered to buy it — the first Steam decks aren’t expected to start shipping until February 28.
Valve has now confirmed this timeline, and it’s more accurate.in a Release Date Details Update, Valve said the first emails to reservation holders will be sent out at 10 a.m. PT on February 25, when recipients will have 72 hours to complete their purchases. If they don’t, either by canceling or failing to complete the process, their reservation will be sent to the next person in the queue when the clock hits zero.
Commentary coverage on the Steam platform from about 100 media outlets (including us) will start going live around the same time, “so there will be a lot of interesting content and coverage for everyone to see,” Valve said.
Unfortunately, every silver lining is clouded, and in this case the wait times for the official deck docks have been longer than expected. “We also look forward to getting the official Dock of Steam Deck into the hands of customers,” Valve wrote. “It’s not going to happen as soon as we’d like, but we’re excited to talk about it soon and plan to launch in late spring.”
Supply issues are a real problem for the Steam platform: as we said earlier this week, the limited availability of hardware “will warrant a slow rollout” and diminish the overall impact of its launch. Steam Deck orders placed now aren’t expected to start shipping until sometime in the second half of 2022, though that could change if enough people drop their pre-orders. (To be clear, this is highly unlikely.)
The hardware itself is an entirely different matter, though. Developers rave about its features, and the number of Steam games verified to run on it continues to grow. Valve also recently added a new feature to Steam that enables users to check if their games are compatible with Steam Deck.