I actually got attracted to your question as it involves the features and questions about #newsteem. I am quite sure every Steemians is aware of some great changes on the steem blockchain after the implementation of the recent hardfork which led to the modification of users posts rewards, upvotes rewards and other great features we all are experiencing at the moment just as you've stated in your post and I quote " the New Steem initiative, including the increasing in curation rewards for voting on content and the formation of a business investment fund have been good for Steemit. New Steem was created after Hard Fork 21 and 22, with a focus on adoption and new user participation."
Is this actually a great game changer for steemit ?
As for me I will say the newsteem has actually been a great game changer on the Steemit community because of the below reasons ;
#1 INCREASE IN USERS ACTIVITIES ON THE STEEMIT PLATFORM: The fact is that we can't compare the activities done by users before the implementation of newsteem to the present utilization of Steemit by users. The number of blogging activities and Upvoting activities on the platform tends to be increasing drastically ever since newsteem has been implemented.
One of the major reasons for this great change is actually due to the increment in Curation rewards when compared to the previous steem activities and for this reason, I see the steem blockchain ranking the best out of all other social media blockchain platforms.
#2 IMPLEMENTATION OF SMTs :Steemit Smart Media Tokens is also another reason i actually love the newsteem due to some rules and plans involved before the launching of SMTs. I suggest you read @steemitblog post as regards to the new plan they have on SMTs.
The implementation of SMTs itself is another great changer for steem as it enables users to earn more steem and it can also lead to the boost in price of steem provided the price of #bitcoin appears to be high and stable.
STEEM is currently near all time lows, and Steemit has seen a decrease in new users and visits.?
As regards to this question, I will say steem isn't the only crypto experiencing a drastic fall at the moment because there are also other cryptos experiencing the same as a result of the unfavorable situation at the crypto market. The unfavorable condition of the market has led to most people abandoning crypto investments and blockchain related activities for now but I am quite sure most of them will come back if there is an increase in price (that's humans for you).
As regards to steem loosing new users, I don't actually corroborate with this. I suggest you read at @acrange analysis on newly registered users on the platform by comparing the previous years to this year.
In conclusion, I believe in steem and I am quite sure the teams are doing their possible best to make Steemit great and I hope we also have to keep promoting and developing steem according to our capabilities because we all win together if Steemit wins.
Thanks for reading and I hope this helps.