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The RTX 3080 is the 4th fastest growing GPU according to the latest Steam hardware survey

GeForce RTX 3080
(Image credit: Nvidia)
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If you've been trying to buy a GeForce RTX 3080, you've probably experienced the real frustration of trying to find one. Turning to a bot that scans the big stores may be the answer, but for the most part that just highlights how rare they are. In fact, it's so hard to track down and buy, that potential buyers have been left feeling that this is little more than a paper launch. 

A claim that can now be put to bed thanks to the November Steam hardware survey, which sees the RTX 3080 in the number four spot as having the biggest percentage change over the last month. 

According to the November survey, the RTX 3080 accounts for 0.23 percent of the GPU landscape according to Steam. This may not seem like a big percentage, but that depends on how many participants there are in the survey.

(Image credit: Valve)

It's difficult to know for sure how many users Steam lays claim to, although it's a bit more transparent when it comes to concurrent Steam users, which hit just over 24 million at its peak over this weekend. 

These numbers aren't representative of the Steam hardware survey though, which is an opt-in survey that can pop up when you change hardware in your machine. The emphasis is on 'can' here, because there's no guarantee you'll be asked to participate, regardless of how much your PC has changed.

(Image credit: Valve)

So we can't know for sure how many participants there are in the survey, and therefore you can't just extrapolate that 0.23 percent against the 24 million active users (which would indicate 56,255 users have the $699 graphics card.) Because of the volumes involved, this number could be massively inaccurate. It does show that there are people out there that have the card though, and it sold on a comparable level to the GTX 1650 in November, which is commonly found in budget desktop and more-affordable laptops.

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Another interesting point about the latest Steam hardware survey can be found by looking at the PC Video Card Usage by Mfg data, which shows a 1.04 percent growth in DirectX 8 GPUs and below. This undoubtedly isn't due to gamers buying older cards, but rather dusting off old machines and installing Steam on them to get some retro gaming action in. 

The same survey shows an increase in AMD's market share, with the red team clawing back 0.72 percent from Intel, although it doesn't break this down by particular models, rather by the operating frequency, which isn't particularly helpful. The amount of RAM in the average machine is also on the rise, with 43.24 percent of machines now packing 16GB of system RAM as standard—a healthy improvement in our eyes. 

Alan Dexter

Alan has been writing about PC tech since before 3D graphics cards existed, and still vividly recalls having to fight with MS-DOS just to get games to load. He fondly remembers the killer combo of a Matrox Millenium and 3dfx Voodoo, and seeing Lara Croft in 3D for the first time. He's very glad hardware has advanced as much as it has though, and is particularly happy when putting the latest M.2 NVMe SSDs, AMD processors, and laptops through their paces. He has a long-lasting Magic: The Gathering obsession but limits this to MTG Arena these days.