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A Look at Steam’s Hardware Survey for February 2013

Posted on March 4, 2013 10:30 AM by Rob Williams
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Another month, another Steam Hardware Survey. Isn’t it a little hard to believe that it’s March already? 2013 seems like it just got here, but it’s been an exciting one so far. This is especially true on the Steam front, as mid-February marked the official launch of the platform for Linux. Prior to that, the total usage share hovered at 1.27%, so this update has been an exciting one to wait for. Did the OS gain in those couple of weeks?

It sure did. It now sits at 2.08%, with the leading entry being Ubuntu’s 12.10 x64 edition (0.73%), and the x86 edition of the same version slotting into the second spot. The rest of the Linux share is made up of Ubuntu 12.04 and also Linux Mint, which captured 0.17% of the pie.

Steam Hardware Survey February 2013

A 2.08% share is admittedly a “drop in the bucket”, but when you consider the fact that Mac OS X usage only marginally beats it (3.07%), it becomes a little more impressive. We’ll have to wait until next month to see if this uptick continues, and it’d be quite the event if Linux did manage to beat out Mac OS X so quickly.

Enough of this gushing over Linux – let’s get a move on with it.

Given the fact that we exited the holiday season not long ago, we wouldn’t expect any major shifts on the GPU and CPU vendor fronts – and we certainly don’t see any. The differences are so minor, they’re not even worth talking about, unless a maximum difference of 0.20% excites you. The same lackluster shifts can be seen with the other categories in the graphic above, as well.

Let’s riddle off a couple of other fun facts. Those equipped with 8GB of RAM rose 0.83%, while those with 12GB+ rose +0.57%. Looking at RAM stats, I can’t help but wish Valve separated both notebooks and desktops, because it’d be interesting to see how many people on the desktops still use 4GB or under.

Those using 1080p displays continue to work their way on up the charts, with a +1.12% gain month-over-month, to currently settle in at 30.28%. The second most popular resolution is 1366 x 768, ultra common on notebooks, but it saw a decrease of -0.44%. Somewhat interestingly, despite monitors being more affordable than ever, there’s been no real increase of 3×1 setups for some time. Instead, dual configurations are the ones that are growing – especially 2x 1080p, which gained +0.25% and sits at 10.22%.

That about sums up all I can glean from this month’s survey that’s actually interesting. Next month will be noteworthy for a couple of reasons; the biggest being that Linux might overtake Mac OS X in usage. I don’t actually expect it to happen, but it could.

On a related note, don’t miss our post from last week that talks about one developer’s successes from having his Linux game available through Steam!


  • e550mercedes

    Even though I started with Ubuntu, and I’m still a fan (Kubunto too), for me personally, I now consider Mint to be my favorite Linux distro, and I was just wondering what was yours?

    • http://www.facebook.com/deathspawner Rob Williams

      Gentoo through and through. With the advent of Steam on Linux though, I am half-tempted to consider moving to another distro if the situation is better there than here. It’s hard to say though. I don’t like Ubuntu too much.

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