Video encyclopedia

Steam (service)


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Steam is a video game digital distribution service platform developed by Valve Corporation. It was launched in September 2003 as a way for Valve to provide automatic updates for their games, but eventually expanded to include games from third-party publishers. Initially launched as a software client component to help keep Valve's games up-to-date, the Steam service has expanded to include web- and mobile-based interfaces for consumers and developers for third-party games. Between the standalone software client and online services, Steam offers digital rights management (DRM), matchmaking servers, video streaming, and social networking services. It also provides the user with installation and automatic updating of games, and community features such as friends lists and groups, cloud saving, and in-game voice and chat functionality.
  • History 

  • Client functionality 

  • Storefront curation 

  • Platforms 

  • Market share and impact