Steam in-home streaming is a new feature that allows you to play a game on one computer when the game process is actually running on another computer elsewhere in your home. Through Steam, game audio and video is captured on the remote computer and sent to the player’s computer. The game input (keyboard, mouse or gamepad) is sent from the player’s computer to the game process on the remote computer.
Any two computers in a home can be used to stream a gameplay session and this can enable playing games on systems that would not traditionally be able to run those games. Imagine playing Skyrim or Bioshock Infinite with ultra settings on your old laptop. Hook that laptop to you TV, enable the "Big Picture mode" and voila, you have a Steam OS!
What do you need for getting Steam Machine like experience?
- A powerful enough PC, capable of running modern games.
- Steam account and Steamworks games
- Any old PC, laptop or netbook running Windows or Ubuntu Linux
- Good WiFI network
- HDTV or monitor for display
- Gamepad (Xbox 360 controller works flawlessly)
On your laptop, you can tick "Autorun" and "Start in Big picture mode" in the settings if you prefer to play with a gamepad.
Steam Streaming service is currently in open beta. Join this group for getting a beta invite. The service will be free and launched as an open beta soon.