CES 2011, Las Vegas - Valve co-founder and managing director, Gabe Newell, took the stage at CES and has called Intel's Sandy Bridge processor "a game changer".
Intel's Sandy Bridge family puts a much larger emphasis on visual performance, thanks to it's integrated 32nm GPU. With laptops becoming a much bigger bit of the pie in sales, this is a win for Valve - higher end graphic performance on laptops could potentially help Valve's scalable Source engine.
Newell had a few things to say about Sandy Bridge, firstly "Sandy Bridge is awesome," and follows through with "We've been using it for a couple of months. Sandy Bridge really does give us the great features and performance that we need to develop great customer experiences for gamers. Sandy Bridge cannot only run today's games, but even the next generation of games. It's a real game changer for us. This allows for a console like experience on the PC."
It's pretty strange what he could mean with the "console like experience on PC" - but, what would make sense is, a higher minimum-spec machine (Intel Sandy Bridge) compared to the large variance in integrated graphics at the moment. Let's hope!