The Steam Deck now supports game transfers on your local network, allowing you to copy installed games from your PC to the Steam Deck without having to download them again from the Internet. This feature, which comes with the The Steam Deck beta update was released last weekshould help reduce the amount of internet data you use, especially if you find yourself frequently re-downloading heavy games to your handheld.
To access the feature, you must first enable the Steam beta on both the Steam Deck and the Steam client on your PC. From there, select the game you want to install on your Steam Deck and Steam will automatically check if a PC on your network already has the game. If it finds one, Steam will begin the game transfer process.
It is worth noting that this feature also applies to PCs on the same network, so you are free to transfer already installed Steam games to your PC from other PCs in your household. Steam takes a closer look at how it all works its support pagenoting that if the devices lose connection during the transfer process “or no more content is available,” Steam will download the rest of the game from its servers instead.
You can also adjust settings that determine which PCs you can download Steam Deck (or PC) from. While Steam defaults it to “Only My Own Devices”, which means you can only transfer games from the devices you’re signed into Steam with, you can also set it to “Only My Friends” and “Any User” if you have games want to download from a friend or family member’s PC. Unfortunately, Steam does not yet support game transfers from the Steam Deck or PCs in Big Picture mode.
I don’t have a Steam Deck (yet), but I sure wish I had this feature when I downloaded it Elder ring from my partner’s shared Steam library. Anyway, I’m glad it’s here now because it’s nice to have something to help me stay under my internet data limit for the month, even if it only has a small impact.