A few weeks ago, people noticed that the Steam mobile app had categories for things besides games, like productivity software and the like. Now in a new email sent out to the press Valve has made it official: starting September 5, Steam will start offering software titles that aren’t games.
This move looks to expand Steam from a powerhouse digital game store, to a possible competitor to Apple’s Mac App Store and even Microsoft’s own upcoming Windows 8 App Store. Valve states that the software will range from “creativity to productivity.” In addition, the apps will take full advantage of the Steam platform in a number of ways.
They will have access to Steamworks features that gamers have come to enjoy, such as simple one click installation, automatic updates, and saving files to the Steam Cloud so that they can be accessed anywhere. After the September 5 launch, software titles will be added to the store continuously, and developers can also take advantage of the newly announced Steam Greenlight to submit their programs.
Valve makes their reasoning clear for such a bold move, stating in the email that, “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.” Microsoft and Apple better watch out, it seems that they now have a new competitor to worry about.