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Steam client update includes notes feature and ability to watch films while you play

Game changer.

Steam has now officially added a host of handy new features to its client, following earlier beta testing.

This update sees the arrival of a redesigned in-game overlay, complete with new features, a notes function, pinnable in-game windows and improvements to notifications.

Steam Update: In-game overlay, notifications, and a fresh coat of paint.Watch on YouTube

The ability to pin windows from the overlay means they appear on top of a game while you are still playing. This feature, the company has said, is available for Notes, Guides, Discussions, Achievements, and the web browser, so is ideal for those "multi-tasking maniacs who love to have a movie on in the background while they game".

The pinned overlay's opacity can be adjusted, and only the contents of the window will be pinned, "excluding the title bar and other extraneous UI".

You can see an example of how this looks below.

"This feature is perfect for keeping track of progress or guides while in-game."

As for Notes, this comprises pretty much everything you would expect. Yes, it lets you take notes about your game.

You can also enjoy "rich text formatting, the ability to paste images, multiple notes per game" and all in offline mode as well.

Your notes are saved per game, then synced to other PCs that you are logged into, including Steam Decks. As mentioned above, notes can be pinned as an overlay while you are in a game, but also be accessed outside of this on the game details page.

A noteworthy addition.

This update has also targeted visual and usability improvements across the board. You will notice updated menus, fonts, colours and dialogue with this update in play.

Meanwhile, the UI itself has been given a fresh lick of paint, with Steam highlighting its header, footer and screenshot manager as examples.

Steam gets a fresh coat of paint.

This update is vast, and I am still not finished cataloguing everything it offers. Users will now also see updated Steam notifications, said to have been improved to be more useful, and a changed tray view limited to new notifications only. You can see your notification history thanks to the "View all" page and better control which notifications you do see.

Steam's new-look notifications.

Next up, Steam has redesigned its in-game overlay. A new UI is said to boast "new utility" and more "customisability".

A new toolbar gives users "access to anything you may need in the middle of a game - friends chat, achievements progress, guides, discussions, a browser, and more".

"We’ve completely overhauled the in-game overlay."

Meanwhile, for those on Mac and Linux, Steam has said the technical work in this sizable update has made it "possible to enable hardware acceleration for the Mac and Linux versions of Steam", which will bring them up to par with those of Windows.

"You should see snappier animations, scrolling and more responsive UI," Steam stated.

You can read more on this update via Steam's patch notes here.

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