Windows 8 has surpassed OS X in Steam downloads

To say that Windows 8 has been met with mixed reactions is one of the greatest understatements you will likely read all day. There are those who love it, and those who would rather it simply not exist at all. Valve CEO Gabe Newell has been highly vocal on the topic, going so far as to call Windows 8 a “catastrophe” that has spawned a massive push for Steam on Linux. Apparently these opinions haven’t slowed the adoption rate of Windows 8 among Newell’s own customers, as Steam reveals that Windows 8 users now outnumber OS X users by a significant margin.

Steam’s monthly hardware and software survey does a great job of demonstrating what hardware the average user is packing. There’s not a lot of surprise here when you look at the specs. You’ve got 64-bit Windows 7 soaking up most of the glory, which is to be expected. If you take a look at the breakdown of users by OS, you’ll notice that Windows 8 has more than doubled in total number of users to nearly 5% of all Steam users. OS X, which has had a Steam client since May of 2010, makes up 3% of all Steam users.

Windows 8 Steam

These numbers play well into the announcement that Microsoft has made recently, demonstrating that 842 Windows 8 licenses are sold every minute. While it was speculated that this number was skewed due to manufacturers buying licenses in bulk, it would appear that the adoption rate of Windows 8 is not imaginary. This is likely due in no small part to the inexpensive upgrade path and the volume of new computers in stores now running Windows 8.

Gabe Newell’s comments toward Windows 8 is widely believed to be the reason Valve has been pushing so hard to release Steam for Linux. Currently the Steam beta available for Linux accounts for .57% of the total Steam ecosystem, but it is expected that the performance increases seen in Steam for Linux will drive hardcore gamers away from their current Operating Systems in favor of Linux. Whether or not Steam for Linux will be as successful as previously speculated, there are no shortage of Linux users who dual-boot Windows just so they can play games.

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