Game content update automatically updating to the latest game content updating private repo
Steam is a digital distribution platform developed by Valve Corporation offering digital rights management (DRM), multiplayer gaming and social networking services.
Steam provides the user with installation and automatic updating of games on multiple computers, and community features such as friends lists and groups, cloud saving, and in-game voice and chat functionality.
Before implementing Steam, Valve Corporation had problems updating its online games, such as Counter-Strike; providing patches would result in most of the online user base disconnecting for several days.
Valve decided to create a platform that would update games automatically and implement stronger anti-piracy and anti-cheat measures.
At the time, Steam's primary function was streamlining the patch process common in online computer games.Steam was an optional component for all other games.Valve also recognized, through user polls at the time of its announcement in 2002, that at least 75% of their users had access to high-speed Internet connections, which would only grow with planned Internet expansion in the following years, and recognized that they could deliver game content faster to players than through retail channels.The Steam client was first made available for public beta testing in January 2003 during the beta period for Counter-Strike 1.6, for which it was mandatory to install and use.
The software provides a freely available application programming interface (API) called Steamworks, which developers can use to integrate many of Steam's functions into their products, including networking, matchmaking, in-game achievements, micro-transactions, and support for user-created content through Steam Workshop.Though initially developed for use on Microsoft Windows, versions for OS X and Linux operating systems were later released.