You no longer need a reservation to buy a Steam Deck, according to Valve, the company behind the gaming handheld that launched earlier this year. Each model should be available to buy now, and at the time of writing, Valve’s estimating one- to two-week delivery on all of them (though there has been some wonkiness with the page like there was for the just-released dock for the console).
The company says that it’s worked through its queue of reservations and that the Deck is now in stock. It does warn that if there are enough orders, the estimated delivery times will get longer and that “at a certain point we’ll flip back into reservation mode until we’re able to catch up.” Valve also notes that it’s expanding the global availability of the console, opening up reservations in Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. An email from Valve spokesperson Kaci Boyle noted that the company expects to ship those units out by the end of the year.
After the console was announced in 2021, Valve opened up reservations — and enough people tried to sign up that it nearly crashed the Steam store. The company (and its CEO, in a few cases) started delivering the first units in February and has since been working through its backlog. As 2022 has progressed, the company has moved its delivery estimates forward, at one point telling reservation holders that they could get their units a whole quarter early, despite initial warnings that they may have to wait until Q4 2022 or later. Valve’s increase in production meant that one of our writers, who signed up for a reservation on August 25th, ended up getting his Steam Deck in September.
Whether Valve’s production will be enough to keep up with all of us who are addicted to instant gratification and who may be more tempted to pick one up now that there’s no need to wait for a reservation remains to be seen. But it’s pretty impressive that the company was able to deliver all its preorders ahead of schedule, even amid the chip shortages that have made consoles like the PS5 difficult to get until very recently.