How can people possibly get this confused? It is in the name. Steam*OS*. But apparently some people still think that it's a streaming service because they somehow skipped down the official Steam article on the subject to selectively read a portion about its streaming abilities. Fear not, I'm here to provide some clarity.
First of all, SteamOS is an operating system. I know, it sounds more like a breakfast cereal than an operating system going by the name, but I assure you that it is an operating system.
"As we’ve been working on bringing Steam to the living room, we’ve come to the conclusion that the
environment best suited to delivering value to customers is an operating system built around Steam itself.
SteamOS combines the rock-solid architecture of Linux with a gaming experience built for the big screen"
You see, it is an operating system built around steam with a Linux architecture. An operating system operates a system. Operating systems don't require operating systems to run them, thus it is foolish to think that another OS is require to run SteamOS. Yet lots of people think this is the case, which brings me to point two...
SteamOS can stream games from PC and MAC. But wait, wait! Don't let me lose you now! It plays games without a PC or MAC, too. It can play Linux games on its own AND stream games from PC/MAC.
"You can play all your Windows and Mac games on your SteamOS machine, too"
"Also" is a synonym for "Too" It means that both the first thing said and the thing just said both apply. Thus, the first thing, playing Linux games, and the second, streaming PC/MAC games, both are true!
Please take a 5 minute break from reading to process that difficult information before moving on.
Understand now that SteamOS is an OS that plays games both natively and through streaming? Good! Let's move on!
"But that has no advantages whatsoever!" you say, still not having read the article on Steampowered.com, probably still under the impression that SteamOS is only a streaming service. But it indeed has some interesting advantages. For one, that streaming capability that is a feature of SteamOS and not its only function. Instead of lugging your desktop around if you want to play games in another room, you can play them on the device running SteamOS.
With a less obtrusive OS, you can potentially get better performance out of your game than Windows running on the same hardware. And the fact that gamers are getting an OS that could potentially be a good alternative to being forced to play on Windows is great. Especially since it's free.
Sure, some people will still need Windows for specific software, but shockingly, that doesn't apply to everyone just because it applies to yourself. Possibly not even the majority, since most people use computers primarily for email and web browsing and even their non-windows phones do that these days.
You would think that everyone would understand these simple concepts, since it is all laid out on Steam's website in one easy to read page: http://store.steampowered.c...
But I'm not here to judge; just inform you, you illiterate little...!! *ahem*