Images from Call of Duty developer Infinity Ward shows a self-branded version of what appears to be the Xi3 Piston Steam Box.
Is this a branded Steam Box?
(Credit: Infinity Ward)
Back at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, modular PC manufacture Xi3 showed off the Piston, a small PC funded by Valve that was designed specifically to use Steam's Big Picture interface; a Steam Box by any other name.
Now game developer Infinity Ward, creator of the popular Call of Duty series, has put two different images up — one on Facebook, another on Twitter — showing a small PC with the same appearance as the Piston, but with the Infinity Ward logo printed on it.
What's this? (phone for scale reference) twitter.com/InfinityWard/s…— Infinity Ward (@InfinityWard) March 2, 2013
Gaming forum NeoGaf seized on the images quickly, and speculation has run rife, with many people wondering what the significance of the unit is to Infinity Ward. While some commenters suggested that the unit might be a "dev kit", the concept behind Big Picture and the Steam Box is that it's just a normal PC with a smaller form factor and interface designed to make it easier to use in the lounge room — there's no reason for a specific development kit to exist.
Of most curiosity is the additional module the Piston is sitting on, with the most likely explanation being that it's an external hard drive.
Hopefully Infinity Ward or Valve-itself will provide more information soon.