Starting January 1, 2024, Steam will officially end its support for Windows 7, Windows 8, and Windows 8.1 operating systems. After this date, Steam Client will no longer run on these versions of Windows. To continue using Steam and any games or other products purchased through Steam, users must update to a newer version of Windows.
This change is necessary because Steam’s core features rely on the embedded version of Google Chrome, which no longer functions on older versions of Windows. In addition, upcoming versions of Steam will require Windows features and security updates that are only available on Windows 10 and newer.
It’s worth noting that Microsoft has already terminated security updates and technical support for Windows 7 in January 2020, and for Windows 8.1 in January 2023. Computers running on these operating systems, when connected to the internet, are vulnerable to new malware and other exploits that will not be patched. This malware can cause PC, Steam, and game performance to be poor or stall. Moreover, this malware can also be used to steal user credentials of their Steam account or any other services.
However, this will not affect most Steam users. According to the latest survey by Velve released on Wednesday (March 29, 2023), only less than 1.9% of software audience uses one of the relevant Windows versions. It still affects a significant number of people, and it may make them have no choice but to upgrade their OS or buy a new PC with a supported platform. Ending support can be very inconvenient if users need an older Windows version for work or retro games.
After Microsoft’s discontinuation of support for Windows 7 in January 2020, and Windows 8.1 in early 2023, there has been a lot of pressure elsewhere to migrate. Epic Games, for instance, no longer supports these platforms if users want to run Fortnite. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to use outdated Windows machines in general. Steam compatibility changes may only be a critical point that prompts users to upgrade.
In conjunction with this, Steam has launched the Winter Sale, where users can take advantage of big discounts on numerous games. Additionally, Kominfo has officially restored access to PayPal, Steam, DOTA, CS Go, and Yahoo.