Steam has over 120 million monthly active users, Valve has announced.
The platform saw a new record of 120.4 million monthly active users during 2020, fuelled by people staying at home and playing video games amid the coronavirus pandemic.
"While Steam was already seeing significant growth in 2020 before COVID-19 lockdowns, video game playtime surged when people started staying home, dramatically increasing the number of customers buying and playing games, and hopefully bringing some joy to counter-balance some of the craziness that was 2020," Valve said.
Daily active users hit 62.6 million, peak concurrent users hit 24.8 million, and first-time purchasers reached 2.6 million per month. Steam saw 31.3 billion hours of playtime in 2020, and the number of games purchased increased 21.4 per cent over 2019.
Putting Steam's booming popularity into context, that 120 million monthly active users number is higher than Xbox Live and PlayStation Network's equivalent figures. In a September 2020 interview with CNN, Xbox boss Phil Spencer said Xbox Live reaches over 100 million people each month. In July 2020, Sony announced PlayStation Network had 103 million monthly active users.
So, Steam is doing fantastically well, perhaps unsurprisingly. What's next for the platform? Valve plans to launch Steam China early 2021 (Eurogamer interviewed Valve on Steam China last year). Valve said it's working on user experience improvements: "We're looking at filing down the rough edges that most users encounter when interacting with Steam - basically, we want to make it as easy as possible to buy, install, and play games." There's a Steam Mobile app refresh planned, a look at the Steam Points program in the works, and continued interest in Linux.
"There's plenty more that we're working on that we can't talk about publicly just yet," Valve added.