As rumored, Valve is planning on offering non-gaming software products on Steam, officially confirmed today. Starting September 5, alongside Steam's gaming services, products ranging from creativity to productivity will be available for purchase. These products will same be provided the same range of benefits Steam offers its games, including easy installation, automatic updating, and the use of the Steam Cloud for saving information.
Valve's Mark Richardson, of the business development team, has this to say on Steam's new breadth of scope:
"The 40 million gamers frequenting Steam are interested in more than playing games. They have told us they would like to have more of their software on Steam, so this expansion is in response to those customer requests."
Project Greenlight, Valve's crowd-sourcing initiative, will be launching on August 20 and so will also be available for non-gaming products.
This a brave new world coming to Steam, a completely new business that could ultimately prove a negative element in Valve's healthy gaming environment. Will gamers be willing to accept the new atmosphere, anti-virus software sales rather than gaming sales? What kind of new audience and culture will be introduced into the community, and will they like hats? Change is frightening.
PC users prepare, Steam is introducing non-gaming software into its library of products starting Sept. 5. A brave new world awaits, hopefully Valve and Steam don't lose focus on who their fans and supporters truly are.