avianflu wrote on Feb 21, 2012, 07:40:
Whenever Steam is sold off for $$ (and it will) there's all kinds of unpleasant possibilities. A $20 a year maintenance charge to access your games. $20 per install of network client on different computers. $20 to create a Steam account for the first time. etc. And believe me, the suits sitting around the table at Steam are already thinking about the above.
Look what netflix tried to do when it split the service, reduced the services, and raised the prices (though happily it failed at all of that). ** We already know this is what digital business can do legally to bring in more revenue on existing user accounts.** Steam is no different. There's nothing legal to stop Steam from changing the rules of access tomorrow morning and then again 6 months from now. Geez look how often phone billing rules change and nothing ever happens to them via any legal entity!
So yea, a "game on an install disk" seems extra extra quaint in the digital age but the bottomline is that owning a game disk was far better for the consumer versus the unknown of buying games off of a network client.
There's kind of a difference between Netflix and Steam though, and that's that Netflix started coming up with all their weird shit when their growth stagnated and their costs spiraled out of control. Steam is still growing double digits every year.
If and when that eventually ends, they might come up with weird shit too, but on the flipside, Steam isn't a publicly traded company and they have no fucking
shareholders to please. So it's not really a given that Steam is going to turn against its own client base in an effort to wring a few extra pennies out of them.