Steam gaming network at 50 million users

Steam's Big Picture mode makes it easy to play computer games in the lounge (All rights reserved -...

Steam's Big Picture mode makes it easy to play computer games in the lounge (All rights reserved - Valve Corporation)

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, Last Updated: 10:00 AM ET

Several impressive numbers concerning PC gaming network Steam were divulged Wednesday at the London Games Conference by Sega's VP of Digital Distribution, noting that total users number 50 million, with 5 million of them online at any one time.

Clark noted that 500,000 users were opting to use Steam's new Big Picture mode, which is designed for TVs and gamepads rather than smaller monitors and mouse-keyboard setups, reported PCGamesN.

For comparison, the Xbox 360 service Xbox Live had 40 million subscribers in January 2012; the PlayStation Network had 90 million free accounts by March 2012; Steam's direct competitor Origin, run by Electronic Arts, was launched June 2011, and had accrued 9 million installations by February 2012 and 30 million registered users by October.

Meanwhile, the Windows and Mac-friendly Steam itself continued its current expansion onto Linux machines, inviting a further 5,000 users to participate in pre-release testing; Gabe Newell, MD of Steam's parent company Valve, has spoken out against Windows 8 and was recently confirmed for the games industry DICE Summit keynote in February 2013.


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