Steam on ChromeOS beta arrives — these Chromebooks give you access

Acer Chromebook 516 GE
(Image credit: Acer)

Steam on Chromebooks finally moves to beta on ChromeOS. After the alpha build of Steam on Chrome OS arrived earlier this year, allowing select Chromebook users to play iconic PC games such as Portal 2, Half-Life 2, Stardew Valley, and more, it's now more widely available on the ChromeOS 108.

Available in the beta channel of ChromeOS 108, which many spotted in the Chromium Gerrit, Steam can be accessed by a select list of Chromebooks outlined in Google's Chromium page. As developers note: "When borealis enters the beta development phase we will allow compatible Chromebooks on the beta channel to install it."

As gaming Chromebooks are starting to emerge, including Acer's first gaming Chromebook announced in October, bringing Steam support makes playing on Google's laptops a reality. While the full release of the popular gaming platform has yet to arrive, a selection of Chromebooks will be able to access the beta, which aims to be more stable than the alpha build. 

Steam on Chrome OS via 9to5Google (Image credit: 9to5Google)

Chromebooks that support Steam 

Steam already came to a small set of Chromebooks with specific specs. Chromebooks needed to have at least an 11th Gen Intel Core i5 or i7 CPU and a minimum of 7GB of RAM. However, a new generation of Chromebooks now offer an updated list of specs.

According to Acer, the updated list of Chromebooks that support Steam in beta include models that are powered by 12th Gen Intel Core i3 or AMD Ryzen 5000 C-Series Ryzen 3 and higher CPU, with at least 8GB of RAM. This list includes the following: 

(Image credit: Acer)

During the alpha build, Chromebooks needed to have at least an 11th Gen Intel Core i5 or i7 CPU and a minimum of 7GB of RAM. The list included:

We'll update this page with more Chromebooks that support Steam when they become available, as the list is expected to grow closer to the official release of Steam on Chrome OS.

Previously, news outlets 9to5Google (video) and Chrome Unboxed (video) have both showcased hands-on impressions of how Steam runs on Chrome OS, playing a selection of titles Google recommends and more. Games such as Portal 2 and Half-Life 2 reportedly ran smoothly at 60 fps without any input lag or performance issues. Other titles including Stardew Valley and Slime Rancher also played well, but settings needed to be adjusted or put on low graphics settings.

Now that Steam is available in the beta channel, more games are set to be available with stable performance. However, since it is in beta, users are expected to run into some errors and hiccups.

You can check out the full list of games available on Steam in the ChromeOS beta here, which includes Portal 2, The Witcher 3, Fallout 4, Disco Elysium, Tekken 7, Hollow Knight, and plenty more.

We can't wait to try out Steam on Chromebooks capable of running the gaming client, espeically once it's officially released. In the meantime, check out the best gaming Chromebooks on the market. 

Darragh Murphy

Darragh Murphy is fascinated by all things bizarre, which usually leads to assorted coverage varying from washing machines designed for AirPods to the mischievous world of cyberattacks. Whether it's connecting Scar from The Lion King to two-factor authentication or turning his love for gadgets into a fabricated rap battle from 8 Mile, he believes there’s always a quirky spin to be made. With a Master’s degree in Magazine Journalism from The University of Sheffield, along with short stints at Kerrang! and Exposed Magazine, Darragh started his career writing about the tech industry at Time Out Dubai and ShortList Dubai, covering everything from the latest iPhone models and Huawei laptops to massive Esports events in the Middle East. Now, he can be found proudly diving into gaming, gadgets, and letting readers know the joys of docking stations for Laptop Mag.