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11 percent of Steam purchases made on Macs

updated 09:10 pm EDT, Fri May 21, 2010

Macs have unusually large share of Steam sales

Valve as part of its first weekly update to the Mac Steam library revealed that Macs make up a disproportionately large number of game buyers. About 11 percent of downloads on the service now go to Macs, two thirds of which are portables. The developer also took a jab at Windows and noted that Portal was a fifth as likely to crash on Mac as it was on Windows platforms.

The ratio of Mac downloads is proportionately higher than Mac market share, which usually sits at less than five percent worldwide, but also suggests that an unusually large part of the Mac user base has used the service. If Portal counts towards purchases, it may also have skewed the results as the free downloads until May 24 may have led to disproportionately higher downloads.

A full report on OS distribution is expected in June, when Valve will have had a month's worth of statistics to better gauge results. User surveys and other details should appear roughly once a month.

by MacNN Staff





  1. Herod

    Joined: Dec 1969


    cant figure it out

    is this good or bad?

  1. MorituriMax

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Hmmm, spinning on out

    Too bad they don't also mention that the graphics in the Mac versions are lagging behind the Windows version. Way behind.

    Course, give em time, eventually Mac's will play Steam content as fast or faster than Windows machines, but come on, enough with the spin developers. For one thing, you all went to Intel chips before this even became possible today. For another, you are running Windows on Mac's when Apple kept telling everyone how bad Windows sucked.

    But I am happy that Mac computers finally are moving into areas formerly reserved to Windows users. Bravo to Steam, and Bravo to Apple!

  1. dimmer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    It's good!

    Given that Mac gaming seemed to be in a nosedive for the past few years (Aspyr's meltdown, Freeverse dumping all Mac development, Cider producing sub-Windows quality games only on systems that could just boot into Windows anyway) this is really, really good news for Valve, Steam, Apple and Mac users. Sure, the 11% will drop over time, but none the less this is a great showing for the development team, the folks who worked with them to port the Mac games and heck even for Aspyr (whose ports of Civ IV are now available thru Steam). Considering the hate Mac users piled on Valve for not allowing the original Half Life to be ported (or more accurately, not allowing the ported version to ship) it's been a great launch.

    (Well, ok, some parts of the Steam client still suck here and there -- but overall, it's cool.)

  1. The Vicar

    Joined: Dec 1969



    They're getting all the pent-up purchases from the years in which Macs couldn't buy this stuff. In a year or so, the purchases will die down.

  1. Feathers

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Someone has their data backwards. The installed Mac user base is higher than its (sales) market share because Mac users hold onto the same machine for longer. Apple's market share (annually) is about 5-6% but the installed user base is closer to 10% so Valve or MacNN's assertions are just spin! Also, market share is skewed by the prevalence of Windows in the workplace, where there are users who use PC's in work but Macs at home. It's good to see Valve putting positive spin on their Mac success but it's better to be honest about it!

  1. MCroft

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Part of the demographic.

    I purchased Torchlight for Mac from Steam last weekend and I've been enjoying it. I don't know if I'll purchase a lot of new games, I'm out of the habit of $50 games and enjoy the beer money. $10 games are great, though.

    Gotta say, I did not love the Steam update that broke my Torchlight app the second day I had it, but they fixed that quickly. As an early adopter, I suppose I have to expect that.

    I wish them luck and I'm glad that they seem to like working on the Mac. Keep it up, guys.

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