Why is Valve hiring statisticians

Valve's Steam service publishes user statistics

1,728,662 members of Steam have given the US development studio Valve permission to read out data and information about their computer and publish it as part of a large overview. The results are now in, with some surprises. 38.2 percent of the participants already have 2 or more GB of RAM in their computers, and 18.8 percent can access 512 MB of video memory. Nevertheless, most users - 39.2 percent - only use 1280 by 960 pixels as the standard resolution, the second largest group even only using 1024 by 768 pixels. Windows XP is installed by 80.9 percent of the players, Vista in 32 bit by 14.97 percent and the 64-bit version by only 2.65 percent; Linux and Mac OS do not appear in the survey because Steam does not yet support them natively.

  1. FMP Claims Management Potsdam GmbH, Potsdam
  2. University of Applied Sciences Bonn-Rhein-Sieg, Sankt Augustin

According to the results, 58.7 percent of the survey participants are English-speaking, German is second with 10.4 percent, followed by French with 9.28 percent and then Russian with 6.15 percent.

The results of the Valve Hardware Survey are not representative because there was no weighting according to entry-level and professional gamers - the latter are likely to be clearly in the majority. Nevertheless, due to the huge number of participants, the data are very informative with regard to the target group of hardcore PC gamers.