Steam October 2023 Survey Shows Windows 10 Holding Strong

Steam Software and Hardware Survey
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

The Steam survey for October 2023 has been released, showing some notable and interesting changes, including the resilience of the Windows 10 operating system. Despite a month-long gap between these surveys, some changes are pretty significant. For instance, there has been an increase of about 13.71% among simplified Chinese users, making up for 45.9% of its users, while 26.40% use English as a primary language. The Russian language comes in at third with 7.29%. 

Software and hardware trends are also interesting; let's dive in.

Windows 10 64-Bit Still 'King of the Hill'

Steam Survey (OS)- OCT 2023

(Image credit: Steam Survey- OCT 2023)

While it is no surprise Windows 10 64-bit is still the preferred choice of the operating system for most of its users, it is interesting to see a 7.53% increase in its user base while seeing a reduction of 7.27% with Windows 11. This would naturally include new users and those who may have switched between operating systems within a month of use.

Windows 10 is an eight-year-old operating system and is the oldest active and dominant OS in Steam's software and hardware survey. It was first released in July 2015, while its successor arrived in 2021. 

On average, we're seeing most Steam users with 16GB memory. But we're also seeing a steady increase of 8.28% of its users opting for 32GB system RAM, a very strong increase since October.

Steam Survey (Primary setups- Oct 2023

(Image credit: Steam Survey Oct 2023)

Similar changes can be seen with screen resolution. While 1080p dominates the charts, 6.53% of the user base has adopted a 1440p resolution display since September 2023. With manufacturers gradually moving to OLED and higher-res monitors as a mainstream display type, we should see more 1440p and 4K display users during the same month next year.

With multi-monitor setups, 59.98% of users sport a 3840 x 1080 resolution, indicating a dual 1080p monitor configuration. 22.34% of its users use dual 1440p monitor setups. There has been no significant change between the two since last month.

With storage, we can see Steam users maintaining above 1TB for their primary drive while reserving the system's free storage above 4TB.

Reforms Needed With Steam Survey

It will be helpful to its users and developers to include the CPU's SKU, but the survey currently only tracks the manufacturer, core count, and frequencies. For reasons unknown, Steam restricts Intel and AMD CPU surveys to cores and frequencies when it shows detailed information about GPU SKUs, monitor resolution (including multi-monitor setups), and VR headset models. CPU frequencies are not a standard to determine performance levels between generations and CPU makers. 

It would also be insightful to see memory types being used, including DIMM and SO-DIMM data. If there's a way to display data from ultra-wide monitors, indicating its resolution and curved radius (if possible), it will help purchase decisions for users and data to implement immersive changes by game developers. Some of the CPU feature sets listed under 'Other Settings' could be easily cleaned out as a result. While showing HDD and SSD data may be redundant since recent titles demand SSDs as a bare minimum, indicating SATA-based HDDs, SSDs, and M.2 SSDs would also be helpful. 

Freelance News Writer

Roshan Ashraf Shaikh has been in the Indian PC hardware community since the early 2000s and has been building PCs, contributing to many Indian tech forums, & blogs. He operated Hardware BBQ for 11 years and wrote news for eTeknix & TweakTown before joining Tom's Hardware team. Besides tech, he is interested in fighting games, movies, anime, and mechanical watches.

  • P1nky
    The big influx of Chinese players was because there was a 8-day Holiday for Mid-Autumn Festival and National day. This period, and also Spring Festival in January, see a massive spike in Steam players.

    https://www.china-briefing.com/news/wp-content/uploads/2022/12/China-Public-Holiday-2023-Calendar-scaled.jpg
    China loves Intel+Nvidia. November's numbers will be similar to September, things going back to "normal" stats.
    Reply
  • parkerthon
    P1nky said:
    The big influx of Chinese players was because there was a 8-day Holiday for Mid-Autumn Festival and National day. This period, and also Spring Festival in January, see a massive spike in Steam players.

    https://www.china-briefing.com/news/wp-content/uploads/2022/12/China-Public-Holiday-2023-Calendar-scaled.jpg
    China loves Intel+Nvidia. November's numbers will be similar to September, things going back to "normal" stats.
    I recall that China cracked down on gaming in general with severe limits for under 18. Happen to know if that gets lifted holidays? Curious how steam and other gaming companies are enforcing the draconian chinese laws.
    Reply
  • Order 66
    Steam finally gave me the option to participate in the hardware survey, unfortunately, it was at a terrible time because I was in the middle of putting in payment information. I know I could have hit no, but I didn't want to potentially lose the chance. After I hit accept, it refreshed the payment information page and made me put it all in again.
    Reply
  • mikeljason
    I'm strongly considering moving away from Windows to Linux once Windows 10 is no longer supported. The more Microsoft treats is users like Apple does (forced updates, features i don't want being forced on me, ui design, plus privacy concerns) the less I'm willing to live in their realm of control. Linux keeps getting better (and easier to use) and Windows keeps getting worse.
    Reply
  • USAFRet
    mikeljason said:
    I'm strongly considering moving away from Windows to Linux once Windows 10 is no longer supported.
    Many people say this.
    Few actually do.

    Good on ya if you do.

    Me, I use both, as needed.
    Reply
  • halfcharlie
    Yeah well if others are anything like me, there's no way in hell I want to try to set up a whole new operating system, 50+ various softwares, then however many drivers, runtimes, countless settings etc etc all over again. Also not knowing if some of those may not work on W11. I'll hang on to my W10 installation by the fingernails, it's already been moved to a completely new build twice now by cloning C. I'm technically still using the same Chrome, bookmarks and all, since the beta release over 10 years ago for the same reason.
    Reply