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Valve releases beta Steam app for mobiles

By Matt Martin

Thu 26 Jan 2012 8:06pm GMT / 3:06pm EST / 12:06pm PST

Free app for iOS and Android devices goes live

Portal creator Valve has released a beta app for iOS and Android devices.

The app will allow users to chat with Steam friends, browse community groups and profiles, view screenshots and user-generated content and check on sales on the Steam service.

"The Steam app comes from many direct requests from our customers," said Gabe Newell, co-founder of Valve.

"Mobile is changing way people interact, play games and consume media, and the Steam app is part of our commitment to meet customer demands and expand the service functionality of Steam to make it richer and more accessible for everyone."

Users can download the free app now and will be added to the beta service as it ramps up.

From Recommendations by Taboola


Adam Campbell Product Executive, Hopster

1,419 1,452 1.0
I'm awaiting an itunes, Playstation Suite and Android Market rival from them..

Posted:4 years ago


Frederic Eichinger Web Developer

33 27 0.8
I find it rather disturbing that you refer to Valve as the "Portal creator", Matt ...

Regardless ... Quite an interesting turn, actually ... An official app ... Gives increased security and of course a nice insight ... As Adam said ... What's next?

Posted:4 years ago


Morville O'Driscoll Blogger & Critic

1,977 2,268 1.1
Good to see that it's got messaging. More of my real-life social circle is on Steam than MSN... Very handy. Now I just need to upgrade my phone to something that doesn't cry when it does too much.

Posted:4 years ago


Kieran MacGough Studying Computer Games Design & Programming, Staffordshire University

19 0 0.0
I wonder if Steam will be allowed to sell iOS/Android games via Steam with this app at a later date, or will Apple/Google just stop them?

Posted:4 years ago


gi biz ;,

341 52 0.2
@Kieran: that, and I find extremely unlikely to see a port of - say - Ruse for iOS, so I really don't see the point. Users have been asking for a Linux port instead, and that would be quite beneficial. They should finally keep their word, imo.
Even if now that Desura is out, I wonder if they'd be up to the challenge.

Posted:4 years ago


James Redner president, The Redner Group

4 1 0.3
I also wonder if Steam will eventually start providing games/apps for iOS/droid.

Posted:4 years ago

Valve releasing a free app for Steam is a brilliant strategic move for them. I'm only surprised they haven't done it sooner.

Valve is a company who understands their main market and target audience and creating an easy way for them to spend their money on Steam content.

Posted:4 years ago


Neil Hall Senior Lecturer in Games Animation, Teesside University

22 16 0.7
Now, if I could impulse-buy a Steam game on my phone which then, in turn, starts my PC downloading it... So, it's done when I get home? That would cost me quite a bit of cash, I think! :-)

Posted:4 years ago


Roberto Bruno Curious Person

104 69 0.7
@Frederic Eichinger: I can't see why. They factually are the Portal creators.
Unless what you meant here was that they have even more famous franchises to boast about.

Posted:4 years ago


Max Priddy

64 12 0.2
Looking forward to getting access to this/for it to go live, been wanting to take Steam chat on the go for ages so this is a pretty awesome thing to be happening!

@Roberto - I think he means mentioning Portal over Half-Life 2 :P

Posted:4 years ago


Frederic Eichinger Web Developer

33 27 0.8
Not only over Half-Life 2 actually ... Valve has so many franchises spawned, the Steam platform and Source Engine of course, a large fanbase ... Would honestly have expected a 'larger' description.
I mean, their press release hat enough to choose from. Portal would've been rather low on my list for a site avoiding witty jokes about the according memes.

Posted:4 years ago


Peter Law Freelance Game Designer and Unity Developer, Enigma 23

44 3 0.1
@Kieran MacGough: I don't think Google would have a problem with it, there is more than one place to get your apps from on Android, you don't have to use the marketplace. For example, Amazon have their own android app store [link url=

@Michele Santullo: I would personally prefer Valve to start a selling mobile games via this Steam app, I think there are a lot more people who would utilise that, than a linux client (IMO).

What I want/ hope for this app to evolve into is:
- After purchasing a PC title - it auto downloads for me at home, if my PC is on (as Neil Hall also suggested).
- The ability to add a retail cd key into my mobile and have it download at home, so that when I have bought a game at lunch time whilst at work, I can play straight away when I get home.
- Be able to buy mobile games from the Steam app (won't happen on iOS, so would have to link to the app store).
- Have Steam become like OpenFeint/ Xbox LIVE and have 1 profile for my mobile and PC games.

Posted:4 years ago


gi biz ;,

341 52 0.2
@Peter: according to this link posted by Sandy Lobban in a comment to another article, no. You can compare with this link: As number of users I agree with you, but as number of paying users and average price I have to disagree (the most expensive game on phones sells for a tenth of a AAA PC game).
Also, there have been rumors for years about Steam releasing a Linux client. Rumors probably spread by Valve, that's what brings me to say "it's time they keep their word".
Finally, Steam is about PC games. For many of them there is no way to make a handheld port, both for technical and gameplay reasons. Hence they have little to no titles in their library. Even if they mange to fill it, there would be a huge discrepancy with the PC library, so big to make one wonder why the client have the same name at all. We must not forget also that Apple will unlikely give up on its monopoly.

As for the features you request, if you have a PC at work and you can buy from there, why can't you also issue the "download at home" command from the PC client? They should just allow multiple logins, as in the XMPP chat protocol. Most of the features you ask for could work from a regular Windows/Linux client as well if not better than from a phone client.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by gi biz on 30th January 2012 12:00pm

Posted:4 years ago


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