Valve And Perfect World Are Bringing Steam To China

Steam goes to China with the help of Perfect World

The new Steam chat revamps how your friends list is organized, with a customizable "favorites" section up top followed by friends grouped up in a party or by which game they're now playing. The gaming company just announced Steam Chat, which is now in beta for anyone to try. It features a number of improvements including options to pin friends or group chats to the top for fast access and a group chats interface that lists chats right then and there. While in that mode, you can see your friends (and enemies) and chat just like normal, without so many people chatting at you that you spill your tea into your lap.

I touched on it before, but Steam's voice-chat feature was horrendously insecure before, blaring out your IP address anytime you spoke. You can also save your group chats with a name and avatar, making it easier to come back to them later to pick up the conversation or to play games with those same friends.

Tencent’s We Game platform
Tencent’s We Game platform

Other media content is recognized automatically, e.g. videos on YouTube, and embedded so that the content can be viewed directly in the chat window and not by clicking on the link to load an external resource in a web browser.

Discord has become the de facto chat tool for gamers.

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Next comes the new group chats. As a result, voice chat uses high quality Opus encoding, voice traffic is encrypted, and all traffic is sent through Steam servers rather than directly to peers.

This Steam Chat update looks a lot like Discord, another gaming-centric chat platform which has been called the "Slack for gamers."

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