Xi3 Piston pre-orders open, user interface shown

The Xi3 Piston was shown off at SXSW this weekend, with the presentation revealing the user interface for the customized PC box. At the same time, pre-orders opened for the basic unit at just under $1,000.

Polygon reports that the PC menu is customizable, letting users select the colors of options and which programs launch when they're selected. For example, launching "Gaming" went to Steam, while "Music" opened Spotify. Among the other options were TV, Communication, Computer, Home Automation, Streaming Games, Streaming TV, Streaming Movies, and Streaming Music.

The Xi3 Piston pre-order page is currently open. The device starts at $999 ordinarily, with extra SSD space available for $340 (256GB) or $750 (512GB). The base price has been reduced to $899 through the duration of SXSW. The event lasts until March 17, so you have roughly a week left to order at a discount.

The Xi3 was announced as one of the first so-called Steam Boxes in conjunction with third-party manufacturers, but Valve is planning to make its own Linux-based hardware as well.