Steam says Windows 8 has overtaken Windows XP

While Net Applications gives an idea about how Windows 8 is doing from a more general PC audience, the tens of millions of Steam users show how the operating system is being accepted by the more hardcore PC gaming crowd. Today, the latest Steam hardware survey results are in for the month of February 2013 and it shows that Windows 8 is now ahead of Windows XP among its user base.

The new survey results show that a total of 9.63 percent of Steam users (combining 32-bit and 64-bit SKUs) have Windows 8 installed on their gaming rig, compared to 8.76 percent in January 2013. Windows XP is still being used by 9.33 percent of Steam subscribers, down from the 10.05 percent that it had in January.

Windows 7 is still the top dog among PC operating systems on Steam. The February survey numbers show that it commands 69.31 percent of Steam users, but that's still lower compared to the 69.73 percent in had in January. Windows Vista users of Steam in February totaled a mere 5.84 percent, down from 6.02 percent in January, as the seldom-seen OS' share continues to slowly dwindle.

The combined number of Mac Steam owners is currently at 3.07 percent, down from 3.56 percent in January. There are quite a few versions of Linux showing up in February's Steam survey, but adding them all up shows that they total just 2.02 percent of Steam users.

Source: Steam

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Pretty happy with 8 so far. And I got it for stability, security, the extra speed and the odd tweak here and there - I use 0 of the Metro UI stuff on the desktop though on Surface is works nicely.

Considering all the people that claim there's no reason to upgrade from XP I don't see how it's pathetic. Maybe you could elaborate taking into account the realities of the computer world.

Well, could have been worse. I might have accused an adult? Get mummy to tuck you in and remember the bed bites don't bite, unless it is running Windows 8.

I think it is a massive achievement to have a open source OS listed on there considering the limited number of games available. I am proudly part of the stats for Ubuntu. I can only hope for more growth for Ubuntu in future.

minster11 said,
I think it was because window 8 cost $39.99 instead of $99 for window 7. I don't want IE 8 on it. IE 10 FTW.

Huh? Fragmented thesis you have there.

minster11 said,
I think it was because window 8 cost $39.99 instead of $99 for window 7. I don't want IE 8 on it. IE 10 FTW.

That was an early bird special. It's long over now.

minster11 said,

I am entitled to my opinion, just like you and your judgment thesis BS

Your opinion wasn't worded correctly, that's what he pointed out and there's no need to call BS on him for that.

Well, ain't that something.
The most advanced OS barely making it past the one that was kicking ass 3 Windows generations ago. Srs achievement.

SiCKX said,
Well, ain't that something.
The most advanced OS barely making it past the one that was kicking ass 3 Windows generations ago. Srs achievement.

It is quite a serious achievement. In 4 months they overtook XP, which was around for an incredibly long time.

No, that's just a desperate remark to make Win8 look phenomenal. WinXP lost most of its steam (LOL) when Win 7 kicked in.

Win8 64 has almost 9% so it had to pull it from somewhere. Some XP and some Win7. Nonetheless, Win8 is gaining and why shouldn't it? It's a nice OS and even better without the start menu.

<typed on my desktop running windows 8 without a touch monitor and it all works just fine>

SiCKX said,
Well, ain't that something.
The most advanced OS barely making it past the one that was kicking ass 3 Windows generations ago. Srs achievement.

Really? Stop those delusional comments already. Do you have a sense of time? 12 years vs 4 months. XP is 36 times older, and it isn't even "barely".

I only see that WinXP has 8.9% market share. Do you know why is that? I'll help you, it's Win 7 related. You know, the main OS Windows 8 has to come close to. Most people gave up on WinXP, rubbing your woo-hoo because the latest Lamborghini beats the Miura from the 70's is quite sad.

I'm more curious about the Windows 8 machines that aren't 64-bit. Are those Atom based tablets? Or are there people opting for 32-bit Windows rather than 64-bit for whatever reason?

Chikairo said,
Or are there people opting for 32-bit Windows rather than 64-bit for whatever reason?

Older/lower spec'd units I'd guess, got 8 running on a couple older systems myself that only have 2-3GB in them, 64 bit would be more of a hindrance due to the overhead.

Bitness aside, Windows 8 is, in fact, second only to Windows 7. XP is third, with the infamous "All others" trailing XP just out of the money. Among the other trends is the 'death by a thousand cuts' of x32 - only Windows 8 and Ubuntu 12.10 x32 gained ANY share among x32 OSes.

Ace said,
What's x32? I assume you mean x86?

Yeah, but it's not much worse than saying x64... when we really mean x86 and x86-64

Two trains - in their own way, inexorable - threatening to run over 32-bit and XP, which are tied to the tracks, with nobody and nothing coming to rescue them. In fact, Windows 7 x64 leads the entire pack - forty-one percentage points up on it's x32 brother. While XP32 is third, it's less than half a percent up on Windows 8 x64 - in fact, 8 x64 and Vista x64 combined have more Steam share than XP32. (In fact, Vista x64 gained two-hundredths of a percentage point - how does a DEAD OS gain share on Steam?)

It's very simple. If it's a fact that a higher number of people aren't using Vista, and Vista's share goes up, it means the total number of people involved in the survey went down (with a higher proportion of the decrease coming from other OSes).

In other words, it means Steam lost users, lawl.

I think what should be lauded, regardless of the bickering, is that little 64bit, without forcing oems or killing old platforms off against their will.

Deranged said,

I don't think it's optional anymore.

I still get the question every now and then. It's quite rare.
Anyway, considering the information being sent (your account id plus your basic hardware and OS), it's not a secret. All the information that is submitted is the same information that you would shout out in forums and on IRC.
The hardware is just the text that shows up in the device manager. No serial numbers are gathered, so they can't track any devices what so ever. They only want to keep statistics so they can keep track of what to focus on when they update Steam or update their game Engines.

Radium said,

I still get the question every now and then. It's quite rare.

I don't know. I accidentally clicked 'never ask me this again' or whatever once when they were pushing like 15 ads at a crack and I asked support if they could change it back and they said they couldn't

Is anyone surprised? It's not that there are "More windows 8 machines than windows xp" it means that more than likely machines that still have XP on them are not powerful enough to play steam games.

Precisely. Not everyone wants a computer that can only use 3.2GB of their system's RAM. Windows XP will hopefully disappear soon.

norseman said,
Precisely. Not everyone wants a computer that can only use 3.2GB of their system's RAM. Windows XP will hopefully disappear soon.

There is XP 64bit.

Shadowzz said,

There is XP 64bit.

Yep, and not even Microsoft want's to talk about that sorry excuse of an operating system...

I'm aware, thanks.... It's driver support is left to be desired in some situations it can be pretty unstable and has none of the benefits Windows 7/8 have to offer with todays technology though. That's why I didn't mention it, it just doesn't seem viable.

JHBrown said,
Why is this news? All new computers sold are Windows 8. We don't have a choice really.

Really you don't have a choice? When you walk into just about any store (even Walmart), BestBuy, any electronics store now has entire mini apple stores in them selling macs. In fact mac computers are given separate sections to showcase them away from PC's, so they should be getting more attention.

So where exactly do you live that you don't have a choice? That argument hasn't held water for atleast a decade now. Not only that but most major OEM's sell laptops with Ubuntu on them as well.

JHBrown said,
Why is this news? All new computers sold are Windows 8. We don't have a choice really.

Only if you buy a pre built machine.

Any gamer worth his salt puts his own machine together with superior parts.

technikal said,

Only if you buy a pre built machine.

Any gamer worth his salt puts his own machine together with superior parts.


I agree. I should have been more specific. The general population has no choice. Yes there are like 5 Apple products compared to about 20 different Windows 8 machines.

JHBrown said,
Why is this news? All new computers sold are Windows 8. We don't have a choice really.

Nope, a lot of PCs still come with Windows 7 preloaded.

That is plain wrong. You can build your own or even buy a pre-built PC without Windows installed (they usually come with FreeDOS or some Linux distro).

technikal said,

Only if you buy a pre built machine.

Any gamer worth his salt puts his own machine together with superior parts.


So how do you build your own notebook?

I asked this in another comment thread, but why do you think Gabe would think this is a bad thing? His personal inclination regarding Windows 8 does not mean that he doesn't want his product on that platform. Refusing to allow installations of Steam on Windows 8 would be a death sentence for his company. It'd be akin to the CEO of Ford having a fit every time a Ford car drove down a highway that he once crashed on.

Majesticmerc said,
I asked this in another comment thread, but why do you think Gabe would think this is a bad thing? His personal inclination regarding Windows 8 does not mean that he doesn't want his product on that platform. Refusing to allow installations of Steam on Windows 8 would be a death sentence for his company. It'd be akin to the CEO of Ford having a fit every time a Ford car drove down a highway that he once crashed on.

So he's a hypocrite then?

headsoup said,
So he's a hypocrite then?

If he was a hypocrite, he'd have said "People shouldn't be using Steam on Windows 8 because it sucks" and then installing Steam on Windows 8. What he actually said is that he doesn't like Windows 8, but didn't say that people shouldn't use Steam on it anyway. The man's personal opinion of Windows 8 doesn't have any relation to the support of his company's product on the platform.

I swear that Neowin is the only place on the whole web that actually has a problem with Valve and Gabe.

Majesticmerc said,

If he was a hypocrite, he'd have said "People shouldn't be using Steam on Windows 8 because it sucks" and then installing Steam on Windows 8. What he actually said is that he doesn't like Windows 8, but didn't say that people shouldn't use Steam on it anyway. The man's personal opinion of Windows 8 doesn't have any relation to the support of his company's product on the platform.

I swear that Neowin is the only place on the whole web that actually has a problem with Valve and Gabe.

Right, so he hates Windows 8 for games but is happy to make money off and support it. That's being a hypocrite, he's the co-head of the company so his opinion is psuedo the company's.

Majesticmerc said,
The man's personal opinion of Windows 8 doesn't have any relation to the support of his company's product on the platform.

Except that it probably does. I contacted Steam Support regarding Valve's support of Steam on Windows 8 and they responded that it is not a supported operating system.

headsoup said,

Right, so he hates Windows 8 for games but is happy to make money off and support it. That's being a hypocrite, he's the co-head of the company so his opinion is psuedo the company's.

Hypocrite (noun): A person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings

That definition doesn't apply here. Gabe would be a hypocrite if he stated that he hated Windows 8, but secretly loved it, or Gabe saying they wouldn't support anyone who used Steam with Windows 8, while using Steam on Windows 8 himself. The first example is plausible, but that's not what we're talking about here. At the end of the day, Valve have to go where their customers are, and if they go to Windows 8, they've got to go there too in order to continue supporting their customers.

Richard Eid said,

Except that it probably does. I contacted Steam Support regarding Valve's support of Steam on Windows 8 and they responded that it is not a supported operating system.

How recently was this? They have troubleshooting steps on their support site for Windows 8, so my impression is that it's supported. Valve have never supported beta or RC operating systems though, so if you asked prior to purchasing a copy, they you're out of luck regardless. This was the same for Windows 7 too.

ingramator said,

Um no.

Actually given that Steam for Linux has only been out since the 14th of February that represents 2% of users already in the space of 2 weeks. That represents a growth of 1% per week. Windows 8 usage from those stats is growing at an average of .56 of a % per week.

WinA said,
How is he wrong? Just look how many Windows 7 users are and how many Windows 8.

After 4 months of release Windows 8 Windows 8 is still not popular amoung pc users.

Just look Steam and this report also:

http://www.neowin.net/news/win...-in-february-to-279-percent

The issue with the argument is that windows 7 followed on from windows vista, which was generally considered to be a failure which windows 7 fixed (and I agree with to some extent). So loads of people jumped from vista at the fist chance to a great OS which is 7, and others held of entirely until 7, with the rest getting 7 on new PC's.

The problem 8 has, along with the metro opinions, is that 7 was/is brilliant. So for 8 MS has no big userbase ready to jump ship (from vista or XP), along with the big UI changes.

I kinda think MS knew dam well the numbers wouldn't be as stellar as 7, its makes perfect sense. But the main thing is it is getting out there and people are liking it (from my own experience they do, unless they've been exposed to negative opinion then its all 'jump on the band wagon nonesense').

The issue with the argument is that windows 7 followed on from windows vista, which was generally considered to be a failure which windows 7 fixed (and I agree with to some extent). So loads of people jumped from vista at the fist chance to a great OS which is 7, and others held of entirely until 7, with the rest getting 7 on new PC's.

And it took 7 11 months to overtake Vista's 20% marketshare, and 3 years to overtake XP.

mrp04 said,

You don't think 9% of steam users in 4 months is impressive? You're deluded.

Hooray for useful information! http://arstechnica.com/microso...4-bit-dominating-32-bit.ars

Since Windows 7 RTM'd in late July '09, this is still bit further out than where we are right now with Windows 8. But it's a MUCH more relevant comparison than pointing at Linux (Seriously guys, it was the TF2 swag that did it. That's all.).

February 2010, Windows 7 had a combined (32- and 64-bit) Steam share of 28.53%. Three months later it made it to 35.92% (http://arstechnica.com/informa...eam-mac-os-x-grabs-8-share/).

Enjoy information!

WinA said,
After 4 months of release Windows 8 is still not popular among pc users.

I was expecting Microsoft to sell 500 million copies of Windows 8 within its first week on sale. For some reason, that didn't happen. How disappointing!

MiniMeSorinel said,
that may have something to do with the team fortress 2 "tux" item

Bingo. I know several people who have install Linux specifically to get that item. Then they dumped it.

duddit2 said,
The problem 8 has, along with the metro opinions, is that 7 was/is brilliant. So for 8 MS has no big userbase ready to jump ship (from vista or XP), along with the big UI changes.

Windows XP has a 30% user base that will be jumping ship very soon. I for one, would not want to be using an unsupported OS.

Javik said,

Actually given that Steam for Linux has only been out since the 14th of February that represents 2% of users already in the space of 2 weeks. That represents a growth of 1% per week. Windows 8 usage from those stats is growing at an average of .56 of a % per week.

Exactly. It's the year of desktop Linux.

Javik said,

Actually given that Steam for Linux has only been out since the 14th of February that represents 2% of users already in the space of 2 weeks. That represents a growth of 1% per week. Windows 8 usage from those stats is growing at an average of .56 of a % per week.

It has been out for much longer actually. See the difference column, that is the difference with last month.

Javik said,

Actually given that Steam for Linux has only been out since the 14th of February that represents 2% of users already in the space of 2 weeks. That represents a growth of 1% per week. Windows 8 usage from those stats is growing at an average of .56 of a % per week.

Linux has been on the hardware survey OS list since long before they started on the Linux client. I think maybe WINE reports that way.

Pretty sure that Valve gave TF2 users on Linux a penguin item. So many went and installed Linux for that purpose - boosting Valve Linux numbers artificially. After all most people looked at Linux and went back because it sucked, was slow, messed things up, TF2 was not launching, etc. Plus the few smartasses that installed Linux in a VM just to get the item.

_Alexander said,
Pretty sure that Valve gave TF2 users on Linux a penguin item. So many went and installed Linux for that purpose - boosting Valve Linux numbers artificially. After all most people looked at Linux and went back because it sucked, was slow, messed things up, TF2 was not launching, etc. Plus the few smartasses that installed Linux in a VM just to get the item.

No. Steam reports the os used the majority of the time by a user.

_Alexander said,
Plus the few smartasses that installed Linux in a VM just to get the item.

That would be me. And I hope this thing will be worth something in the future, those 15 minutes in Ubuntu were the stuff of nightmares.