Chromebooks are not known for being gaming powerhouses. They typically have low-powered, budget hardware, and Chrome OS itself feels like a glorified browser. However, Steam games are available if you have a compatible Chromebook.
Valve and Google announced Steam for Chrome OS in 2021. Previously, it was possible to play Steam games on Chromebooks through the “Steam Link” Android app, but that was only streaming games from your PC.
As of October 2022, full-fledged Steam is available on select Chromebooks. Steam for Chrome OS is in its early stages, so don’t expect everything to work perfectly. Before you get started, let’s make sure you have a compatible Chromebook.
Which Chromebooks Are Compatible?
At the time of writing, Steam on Chrome OS is still not widely available. However, we do have a small—but complete—list of which Chromebooks are compatible. As you might expect, the list is comprised of mostly newer Chromebooks with certain hardware requirements. Here’s the full list as of January 2023:
- Acer Chromebook 514 (CB514-1W)
- Acer Chromebook 515 (CB515-1W)
- Acer Chromebook 516 GE
- Acer Chromebook Spin 514 (CP514-3H, CP514-3HH, CP514-3WH)
- Acer Chromebook Spin 713 (CP713-3W)
- Acer Chromebook Spin 714 (CP714-1WN)
- Acer Chromebook Vero 514
- ASUS Chromebook CX9 (CX9400)
- ASUS Chromebook Flip CX5 (CX5500)
- ASUS Chromebook Flip CX5 (CX5601)
- ASUS Chromebook Vibe CX55 Flip
- Framework Laptop Chromebook Edition
- HP Elite c640 14 inch G3 Chromebook
- HP Elite c645 G2 Chromebook
- HP Elite Dragonfly Chromebook
- HP Pro c640 G2 Chromebook
- IdeaPad Gaming Chromebook 16
- Lenovo 5i-14 Chromebook
- Lenovo Flex 5i Chromebook 14
- Lenovo ThinkPad C14
Now, having one of these Chromebooks is just the first step. You also need to have a model that meets certain hardware requirements. That means an 11th-gen Intel Core i5 or i7 processor, a minimum of 8GB of RAM, and Intel Iris Xe Graphics.
Steam on Chrome OS is still in its early stages. However, even when it does graduate into the stable channel, you’re still likely going to need decent hardware. Steam games on Chromebooks are full-featured games that run in Chrome OS’ Linux layer. That requires more power than the typical budget Chromebook.
RELATED: The Best Chromebooks of 2023
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