Valve has updated the Steam Deck to warn owners when the system gets too hot or too cold to operate.
The temperature warnings feature is part of the version 3.3 update for the Steam Deck operating system. This occurs after Valve recently issued a warning gamers not to use the laptop during the heat wave in parts of the world, as high temperatures could negatively affect system performance. Basically, if excessive heat or cold is affecting the unit, it runs the risk of running very slowly or shutting down.
The normal temperature range for the steam hood to work is 0 to 35 degrees Celcius (32 to 95 F). If the temperature of the vapor deck rises to 100 degrees C (212 F), the internal AMD APU chip of the vapor deck will throttle performance to protect itself. At 105 degrees C (221 F) or higher, it will turn off. At the opposite end of the thermometer, it’s a little different. Steam Deck designer Lawrence Yang explained to pc gamer that playing Steam Deck in sub-zero temperatures will have a negative impact on battery life.
“Like any battery-powered device, the Steam Deck’s battery can’t sustain maximum power draw at temperatures below 0°C (similar to the way cars have a harder time starting in freezing weather),” Yang said. “If temperatures drop that low, we’ll start throttling the system to maintain battery longevity.”
In essence, the performance of the steam deck will throttle regardless of the temperature of the environment you are playing it in. So, if you’re playing steam deck in your backyard and see a flashing temperature warning on the screen, bring it back inside immediately to cool it down, and don’t play it outside again. Check out the Steam Deck OS Version 3.3 patch notes to see what else Valve did with this new Steam Deck update.