Steam rolls out new download options to save on bandwidth

A lot of us are stuck at home right now, which means that a lot of us are using the internet both for work and for entertainment. That, in turn, can cause bandwidth problems for local ISPs, and we've seen a number of companies roll out new measures to help alleviate the load. Today, Valve has announced measures to help save on bandwidth when it comes to Steam, as well as alerting users to measures they can take on their own.

In a post over on the Steam Community blog, Valve says that it has already started "scheduling updates for the next off-peak local time period," assuming that the game in question is one that hasn't been played recently. From here on out, though, it will spread those updates out even further to save on bandwidth.

"Beginning this week, we are now spreading these updates out over several more days," Valve wrote. "Only games played within the last 3 days will be updated immediately." Valve notes that users can always request an update by attempting to play the game, so these new rules won't stop you from updating the games that you actually want to play.

Valve also reminded users of the tools they have at their disposal. For instance, users can schedule auto-update windows for their games, or in the case of a game that they don't play very often, they can turn off auto-updates entirely while leaving it installed. Users can also throttle their own connections to Steam to ease up on their home bandwidth, and they can also move games between drives to free up space instead of deleting those games entirely (and potentially re-downloading them later).

You can find details on how to do all of that over on the Steam Support site. Steam says that it's looking at more solutions to help on its end regarding updates and bandwidth usage, so we'll keep an eye out for that information.