Valve is in the process of beta testing an update to the Steam Community, which will introduce Game Hubs, a new view for user screenshots and an updated Friends page. The layout has already undergone a few changes and will likely be tweaked again before it goes public. At least 50,000 invites
have been given out so far and this number will "increase incrementally until the public launch.
This comes shortly after the announcement that Steam will be introducing non-game applications
on the 5th September and that the Steam client will be updated to support Linux
. While these changes have likely been in the pipeline for many months - if not years - it is worth noting that Gabe Newell (Managing Director of Valve) recently issued a scathing criticism
of Microsoft's upcoming operating system Windows 8, which will offer direct competition to Steam with the addition of the Windows Store app market. While Valve was quick to add jump-list support
for Windows 7 to the Steam client the public criticism of Windows 8 is perhaps an indication that an official Windows 8 Metro/Modern UI app - like the mock-ups seen here
- will not be forthcoming.
Whatever the reasons for the recent flurry of additions to the Steam platform it is users that will benefit from the new additions.Screenshots of some of the changes: PS - This is my first mini-article for Neowin.