Big Picture is Steam’s user interface (UI) that is designed to work well on big displays/televisions. It is a format that has challenged many other apps, but Valve is determined to get it right. The demo looks really nice and Big Picture seems really well thought-out for typical things that people bump into when using large displays.
For example, typing takes into account that game controllers have four main buttons, so Big Picture has a unique keyboard that looks really cool (let’s hope that it is efficient too!). Big Picture also offers web browsing that appears to be easy to use on a large TV.
If you haven’t tried hooking up a PC to a 50″ display, text in web pages is typically hard to read because you sit relatively far away from the TV. Big Picture has a zoom function that is specifically designed to zoom in and out easily.
In the end, Steam’s Big Picture still needs to be connected to a PC. But just like Windows Media Center did in its time, Big Picture makes things convenient and easy in this environment by removing a lot of “friction” that is associated with PC gaming and web browsing in the living room. This is looking good and frankly a lot of TV and cable companies should be looking at this type of interface for their devices. [official page]