The big difference is what each company wants from their service. EA is still focused on the game, Origin just exists to cut out the retailer and keep a little more money in their pockets. Valve has gone down a totally different path. Steam exists as a retail service, Valve sell games intending to get the retailer's cut since they quite often aren't selling their own games. They're salesmen, they'll sell their product by whatever means work best. Valve are also masters of the loss-leader sales method. Somewhat ironically, Valve's own games are often the cheapest and most heavily discounted games on Steam. They don't keep prices of their own games high to put them above games from other developers, quite the opposite: they literally give their games away. Alien Swarm for free, Portal temporarily free, TF2 became free, Dota 2 going to be free, and then copious coupons and discounts for Valve games in every sale or event. They accept the money lost giving games away rather than selling them because they make it back and more by spreading Steam and getting people interested in their IPs.