Steam is a digital distribution, digital rights management, multiplayer and communications platform developed by Valve Corporation. It is used to distribute games and related media online, from small independent developers to larger software houses. Steam also has community features, automated game updates, in-game voice and chat functionality. The software provides a freely-available application programming interface, Steamworks, that developers can take advantage of to integrate many of Steam's functions within their software products. Though initially developed for use on Microsoft Windows, the client has expanded to include a Mac OS X version and a pending port to Linux, and clients with limited functionality on the PlayStation 3 console and for both iOS and Android mobile devices.
As of August 2012, there are over 1500 games available through Steam, and 54 million active user accounts. The concurrent users peak was 5 million on January 2, 2012.