Valve shows off new Steam controller, leaves out biometrics

September 27, 2013 - 

Valve revealed a new controller for its Steam gaming platform, but the new device does not include support for biometrics, despite some heavy hints dropped by the company’s CEO earlier this year.

Reported previously in, in an interview with The Verge, Valve CEO Gabe Newell said “we think that, unlike motion input where we kind of struggled to come up with ideas, [there’s potential in] biometrics. We have lots of ideas.

What the new controller does offer however, is support for both left or right-handed players, dual trackpads, a touchscreen and improved haptic feedback. It’s an impressive device, that the company says can replace the mouse and keyboard combination many of its users have grown accustomed to, but it’s definitely not biometric.

Valve isn’t the only platform company to drop its plans for a biometric controller. There were also previously rumors that Sony would say goodbye to its long-used DualShock in favor of a new controller which would feature fingerprint biometrics, though it appears that the controller will now be released without a sensor.

In 2012, reported a new Sony patent filed in 2012 that outlined a system of user identification and tracking technology to store biometric data, including the use of fingerprint and hand sensors.

Reported previously, Microsoft has confirmed that the Xbox One will not only include facial recognition, but will use it to target ads to its users. It’s also been rumored that the new Xbox console can measure heart rate based on a user’s skin color and transparency, though how this will be used by the system has yet to be seen.

Sony is planning a similar system for facial recognition using an external Kinect-style camera.

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About Adam Vrankulj

Adam Vrankulj is an editor for His background consists of online news writing, editing and content marketing. Adam has written for, BlogTO and was the editor and curator for the nextMEDIA and CIX Source publications. He has a degree in journalism and is passionate about science, technology and social innovation. Contact Adam, or follow him at @adamvrankulj