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Windows 10’s poularity among Steam gamers drops back below 50 percent in January

Why it matters to you

Windows 10's popularity among Steam gamers is hovering around 50 percent, but it's poised to get a major boost from the upcoming Creators Update.

Just as Microsoft can breathe a sigh of relief after learning¬†Windows 10 has crossed the 25 percent market share threshold, another important metric has slipped a bit and demonstrates just how hard it is to push the market forward. This time around, it’s how well-favored Windows 10 is among gamers, at least by one important measure.

Steam is, of course, one of the most popular gaming platforms, and it serves as a sort of bellwether for how gamers are configuring their systems. Measuring how many Steam users are running Windows 10 provides a good indication of how well Microsoft is doing in convincing gamers of the gaming chops of the new OS — and this month, Windows 10 took a step back, as Neowin reports.

More: Microsoft confirms Game Mode coming in Windows 10 Creators Update

The decrease isn’t significant, with Windows 10 falling below the 50 percent threshold it crossed in December 2016 to settle at 49.67 percent in January 2017. It’s not the absolute number that matters, however, but rather the step back itself — Microsoft would hope that Windows 7 and XP would be falling by the wayside by now.

In fact, that’s the opposite of what’s happened. Windows 7 has increased slightly to 35.11 percent, and Windows XP is hanging on to is paltry 1.24 percent share among gamers. Apple gamers remained constant at around 3.31 percent of Steam users running a version of MacOS.

Microsoft has been making a concerted effort to turn Windows 10 into the premier PC gaming platform. The upcoming Windows 10 Creators Update will bring some other important new enhancements, including a Game Mode to optimize the OS while playing certain titles, and built-in Beam game streaming.

Whether or not that’s enough to push Windows 10 back into the majority of Steam users remains to be seen. However, we should find out soon enough, as Creators Update is expected in April. Most of the new features coming in the update are already available to Windows Insiders, and so if you’re a gamer who wants the latest and greatest gaming that Microsoft has to offer, then you can always sign up to get the improvements a little early.