Windows 8 overtakes Windows XP adoption on Steam, while OS X drops and Linux passes the 2% mark

Windows 8 overtakes Windows XP adoption on Steam, while OS X drops and Linux passes the 2% mark

Valve on Friday updated its Hardware & Software Survey for February 2013, and the news is once again very good for everyone except Apple. Both Microsoft and Canonical have reason to celebrate Steam usage for their respective platforms as Windows 8 has overtaken Windows XP and Linux has passed the 2 percent mark (the majority of Linux users are running Ubuntu).

Here is how things looked like for February 2013 on Steam, in order of biggest to smallest share:

  • Windows 7: 69.31 percent
  • Windows 8: 9.63 percent
  • Windows XP: 9.33 percent
  • Windows Vista: 5.84 percent
  • OS X: 3.07 percent
  • Linux: 2.02 percent

Breaking down the numbers even more, here is how each operating system version fared:


Ever since its release, Windows 8 has been the only version of Microsoft’s desktop operating system to gain share on Steam. This has continued through February, as gamers ditch Windows 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP for the latest and greatest.

Three months ago, Windows 8 passed OS X on Steam, and last month, Windows 8 passed Windows Vista.

Now, after just four months of availability, Windows 8 has already passed Windows XP. This puts the operating system neatly into second place on Steam, where it will likely stay for quite a while.

Windows 8 was up 0.87 percentage points between January and February. Meanwhile, Windows 7 was down 0.42 percentage points, Windows Vista dipped 0.18 percentage points, and Windows XP fell 0.72 percentage points.

Microsoft aside, OS X has once again lost share while Linux is seeing big gains. Two weeks ago, Valve released a stable version of its Steam for Linux client and it crossed the 2 percent mark, largely thanks to Ubuntu users.

Going forward, we expect Windows 8 to continue growing, but it won’t pass Windows 7 anytime soon. In the meantime, March will be the first time the Linux client is available for a full month, and we’ll see if it manages to surpass OS X adoption, as unlikely as that may seem.

Image credit: Michaela Kobyakov

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