Windows is the dominant force for those wanting to indulge in some VR gaming fun right now. The OS is supported by various HMDs, quality VR entertainment and games titles, and the muscle of systems makers such as Dell, MSI, and several more pushing VR adoption. However, Valve will encourage wider OS support by bringing a SteamVR beta to Linux and Mac OSX computers "in the next few months".
The above quote came from Valve’s Joe Ludwig during a talk at the Steam Dev Days event in Seattle last month reveals VR-centric site RoadtoVR. Ludwig said that the company's view is that VR should be as open to innovation as possible and this would mean the elimination of platform 'gatekeepers'. One such gatekeeper would be Windows if it were the only platform to support VR entertainment and gaming. Beyong this notion, developers and users are also asking Valve for VR support on OSes other than Windows.
SteamVR is already running on an unnamed Linux distribution, revealed Ludwig. He showed a screenshot (embedded above) of such a system running a VR experience using the Vulkan API on an HTC Vive HMD.
Many SteamVR experiences currently available use Microsoft's DirectX APIs so even when SteamVR does come to support Linux and OSX they won't be trivial to port over, even if there is a will to do so. Perhaps, we hope, the knowledge of SteamVR prepping to support Linux and OSX will encourage software developers to use the Vulkan API to gain a wider audience.
Those of you interested in the value of open platforms to Valve and Steam can watch Joe Ludwig's full Dev Days presentation below.