Steam has long been a dominant force in digital gaming. Operated by Valve and with two decades of history, it is the go-to game digital distribution platform for PC gamers, offering a vast library of titles.
However, the landscape is evolving, with competitors like the Epic Games Store vying for market share.
Steam has continuously improved its services to stay competitive, and users may have noticed recent updates. But has it worked? These ten key Steam statistics show its actual position in the video gaming market.
In recent years, the financial health of Steam has shown remarkable resilience. Game revenue on the platform soared by 31% in 2020 and another 11% in 2021, culminating in a staggering 74% growth in overall game sales over the past three years.
What's even more impressive is Steam's enduring popularity. The platform witnessed an explosive surge in player numbers during the pandemic, with no signs of slowing down.
Additionally, introducing the Steam Deck gaming handheld added a compelling new dimension to gaming and invigorated Steam's user interface.
Keep reading for a deeper dive into the usage statistics behind Steam.
1. In January 2023, Steam reached over 33 million concurrent users for the first time
In January 2023, Steam achieved a milestone by reaching over 33 million concurrent online users.
This surge in users began in early 2020, coinciding with the onset of the global pandemic. By March of that year, Steam had already set a new record with 20,313,451 concurrent users, which continued to climb, hitting 30 million by March 2022.
According to SteamDB, an independent database not affiliated with Valve, Steam achieved an impressive 33,078,963 online users in January 2023, surpassing its previous user milestones.
2. Steam has 30,000 games currently available
Steam is a significant game distributor, boasting nearly 30,000 games ready for players.
2023's top titles are about action and multiplayer mayhem, with games like Apex Legends and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive taking the lead. According to recent data, this is the most-played game on Steam in the year, with 935,772 current players as of June 2023.
3. PUBG: Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds is the most-played Steam game ever, with over 3 and a quarter million concurrent players
PUBG was a trailblazer for the trendy battle royale genre, inspiring numerous successful iterations. With more than double the concurrent players of the next game on the list (Counter-Strike: Global Offensive), it solidifies its position as the undisputed champion of Steam games.
By 2023, Player Unknown's Battlegrounds, or PUBG, holds the title of the most-played Steam game of all time with over 3.25 million concurrent players.
4. Steam provides a developer revenue split ranging from 20/80 to 30/70, favoring games over $50 million in revenue
In terms of developer revenue, Epic Games Store takes the lead with a developer-friendly 12/88 split, allowing developers to keep 88% of their game earnings.
On the other hand, Steam provides a revenue split ranging from 20/80 to 30/70, favoring games that generate over $50 million in revenue.
5. Millennials between 20 and 29 years old represent 43% of adult Steam users in the U.S.
According to Statista, Steam's popularity is exceptionally high among younger generations.
In the United States, millennials in the age range of 20 to 29 years old make up the largest share of adult Steam users, comprising a substantial 43% of the user base. Following closely behind are users aged 30 to 39, representing 33% of adult Steam users in the U.S.
This trend aligns with the broader gaming landscape, where 38% of video game players fall within the 18 to 34 age bracket, while only 6% are 65 years or older.
6. 68% of adult Steam users in the U.S. are male, while 32% are female
According to 4,969 participants surveyed by Statista Consumer Insights in the U.S., as of June 2023, most Steam users are male, comprising 68% of the adult user base, while females comprise the remaining 32%.
In the broader context of U.S. gaming audiences, the proportion of female gamers has been steadily increasing, reaching 45% in 2021, up from 41% in the previous year.
7. English is the top language on Steam, used by 36.87% of the community
English dominates the Steam gaming platform, representing 36.87% of users, according to Statista in 2023. Logrus IT Games further corroborates this language supremacy, reporting that 35.57% of Steam users prefer English.
Yet, Simplified Chinese also holds a significant presence, with 26.86% of Steam users utilizing it. If you're interested in changing your language settings on Steam, various sources offer tutorials on how to do so.
The Steam Hardware & Software Survey also sheds light on language preferences, with English and Simplified Chinese emerging as the top choices as of September 2023.
8. The Windows 10 64-bit operating system is the most used by Steam games, with 63.46% of the share
According to the latest Steam Hardware & Software Survey from September 2023, the Windows 10 64-bit operating system is the most-used platform by Steam games, with 63.46% of the share.
Other operating systems in use by Steam gamers include Windows 10 (32-bit) at 9.47%, Windows 11 at 37.43%, and macOS at 2.37%.
However, Valve, Steam's parent company, has announced the cessation of support for Steam on Windows 7 and 8 starting January 1, 2024. That means users of these operating systems will need to transition to a newer Windows version if they wish to continue enjoying Steam.
9. 22.91% of VR gamers use the Oculus Quest 2 on Steam
The Oculus Quest 2 is the most-used VR headset on Steam, representing 22.91% of all VR headsets used for Steam gaming.
This figure saw an uptick from 17.40% in January 2021 to 22.91% in February 2021. This surge in Oculus Quest 2's popularity aligns with the broader trend of monthly VR users on Steam growing to 2.8 million.
Notably, Oculus devices, including the original Oculus Rift, the original Oculus Quest, and the older Oculus Rift DK2, collectively constitute 58% of all VR usage on Steam.
10. 71.82% of Steam users with multiple monitors have a desktop resolution of 2840 x 1080
According to a post on Steam, nearly 72% of Steam users who use more than one monitor prefer a desktop resolution of 2840 x 1080.
Additionally, about 67% of Steam users with multiple monitors set their main display resolution to 1920 x 1080.
These numbers only apply to Steam users, so they don't include people on other platforms or those who don't use multiple monitors.
Summary: Steam Statistics
- In January 2023, Steam reached over 33 million concurrent users for the first time.
- Steam has 30,000 games currently available.
- PUBG: Player Unknown’s Battlegrounds is the most-played Steam game, with over 3 and a quarter million concurrent players.
- Steam provides a developer revenue split that ranges from 20/80 to 30/70, favoring games over $50 million in revenue.
- Millennials between 20 to 29 years old represent 43% of adult Steam users in the U.S.
- 68% of adult Steam users in the U.S. are male, while 32% are female.
- English is the top language on Steam, used by 36.87% of the community.
- The Windows 10 64-bit operating system is the most used by Steam games, with 63.46% of the share.
- 22.91% of gamers use the Oculus Quest 2 on Steam.
- 71.82% of Steam users with multiple monitors have a desktop resolution of 2840 x 1080.
Steam has seamlessly transitioned from being perceived as a mere DRM tool to becoming an indispensable gaming haven. It keeps adding more titles, has regular sales, and keeps improving its features, making it the top choice for gamers.
Steam's ascent in popularity is evident through the surge in concurrent users, surging from 20 million in March 2020 to a staggering 30 million by March 2022, a testament to its relevance even in the face of a global pandemic.
Beyond its extensive game library, Steam fosters a thriving community, offering features like discussions, profiles, badges, and achievements.
Add to that the convenience of features like Steam Link for game streaming and the console-friendly Big Picture mode, and it's clear that Steam remains at the forefront of the digital gaming revolution.
How do I create a Steam account?
To create a Steam account, visit the Steam website first and register for free with your email address. Ensure you're at least 13 years old, then click "Continue."
Return to the Steam website after verifying your email and setting a password. Click "Install Steam" and download the Steam client for your specific operating system (Windows, Linux, or macOS), and follow the instructions to complete the installation.
Once installed, run Steam and log in using your newly created account's username and password.
What's the Steam Deck?
The Steam Deck is a handheld gaming PC that runs on Linux, giving you portable gaming like the Nintendo Switch.
It's more potent than the Switch, but its battery doesn't last as long, and it has a noisy fan. You can try putting Windows on it, but Valve doesn't fully support it so it might have issues.
Can I install games on Steam remotely?
Yes, you can. If your computer is on, connected to the internet, and running the Steam client, you can manage game installations from anywhere you can access the web. Here's how:
- Log in to your Steam account using a web browser, click on your name, and navigate to Games at the top.
- Switch to the All Games tab to see which games haven't been installed.
- Just click on the game icon to start the download.
For instance, if you're at work or working remotely, you can ensure a game is ready to play when you return home. You can even keep the page open to monitor the download progress.
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- Steam users by age in the U.S. in 2023 | Statista
- What percent of Steam users are female? – Heyiamindians.com
- Language spoken by global Steam users 2023 | Statista
- Steam Hardware & Software Survey: September 2023
- Oculus Quest 2 Is Now The Most-Used VR Headset On Steam
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