Valve is still struggling to make good on one of the Steam Deck’s biggest promised features: the Nintendo Switch-like ability to charge and connect to a TV or monitor for a more-relaxed gaming session.
The company announced late Wednesday that the long-anticipated Steam Deck Docking Station will not be coming out in late spring, citing supply chain issues and closures at its manufacturing facilities that relate to the continuing struggle with covid-19. The dock had previously been planned for a February release alongside the portable gaming device’s official launch, but it was delayed for a yet-still unannounced date.
“We’re working on improving the situation and will share more info when we have it. This has no effect on production schedule and reservation windows for Steam Decks (different parts, different factories),” the company wrote on its site.
The dock is meant to prop up a Steam Deck while allowing it to connect to external displays, USB peripherals, and power cables to allow for much longer sessions than its average disconnected 2-to-8-hour battery life.
Though the accessory is not meant to improve performance, the delay is a shame as it represents a key promise of high-powered portable gaming, being able to easily take a console with you on the go and dock it back at home for seamless play. The Deck dock’s specs were actually given an upgrade in April to improve the number of USB 3.1 ports and beef up transfer speeds. In this latest announcement, Valve said it will work on improving the docked experience “with all USB-C hubs and external displays.”
In the meantime, some users have found docking workarounds, including 3D printing their own Steam Deck docks.
Valve said this delay shouldn’t impact all those who are still waiting to place their Steam Deck orders. The 256GB and 512GB versions of the Deck are still listed as available in Q3 of this year. Some who preordered medium- or high-tier Decks have received notice that their deck was available for purchase.