Valve Corporation, the company behind the popular digital game distribution platform Steam, has announced that it will terminate support for Windows 7, 8, and 8.1 users by January 1, 2024. The decision made public in a Steam support post means that the Steam Client will no longer function on these older versions of Microsoft’s operating systems. To continue enjoying Steam services and games, users must upgrade to a recent Windows version or consider switching to Linux.
Valve’s decision to discontinue support for these operating systems is Steam’s reliance on an embedded version of Google Chrome, which has ceased functioning on older Windows versions. Moreover, the company stated that future iterations of Steam would require Windows features and security updates available only on Windows 10 and later versions.
In recent times, Google Chrome 110 was released, marking the first version of the world’s most popular browser to exclude support for Windows 7. Microsoft’s Edge browser has also discontinued support for these older operating systems, and Microsoft ended extended support for Windows 7 and 8 in January.
According to the latest Steam survey, only a tiny percentage of users will be affected by Valve’s decision, provided they upgrade within the next nine months. The survey results indicate that 1.43% of respondents still use Windows 7 64-bit, 0.34% use Windows 8.1 64-bit, and 0.09% use Windows 7.
Despite Microsoft’s efforts to encourage more users to adopt Windows 11, its growth has been slow. Data from Statcounter reveals that the latest Windows version holds a 19.1% global desktop market share. Surprisingly, Windows 10 users have increased every month since December, with the operating system now accounting for 73% of the market share—the highest percentage since April of the previous year. However, Windows 10 is set to be phased out by October 2025. Windows 7, on the other hand, currently maintains a 5.3% market share.