Whose Vale? I thought ValveSoftware developed Steam.
TF2 voice chat has always been superb but Steam chat has always been poor. I thought it was just a problem with the response latency of the Steam server and a low bandwidth resolution for the data stream as well as poor settings on the clients as well as poor impedence matching of the microphones to their audio hardware. It sounds like SILK is going to allow the bitrate to drop to half what it was originally or under some undisclosed conditions doubled.
This might be an improvement...under unspecified conditions, but I don't see how that is going to help solve the latency problems or poor settings on the clients or poor impedence matching. If valve wants to improve their voice communication then they need to sample the audio signals for cut-off and noise and provide a signal generator to test the settings and provide feedback to the client and let them know if their microphone is not the proper impedence...it's not rocket science.