according toThe Verge reports, Microsoft is building an Xbox mobile game store, against Apple and Google. According to reports, Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard is crucial to its own mobile game store, which relies heavily on Activision and Activision-owned King games.
The CMA is currently investigating the $68.7 billion Activision Blizzard acquisition and is asking Microsoft for information. Microsoft said in the filing that a big motivation for the acquisition was to help expand its mobile gaming business. Apparently, the company’s plans in this area include the creation of the Xbox mobile gaming platform and store.
Call of Duty: Mobile and Candy Crush Saga are two very popular mobile games published by Activision and King, respectively, that Microsoft could use to build a game store to compete with Google Play and the App store. Given Apple’s policy of blocking third-party app stores on iOS, it’s hard to imagine Microsoft competing with Apple anytime soon. But that apparently didn’t stop Microsoft from envisioning the Xbox mobile app store.
Microsoft’s push for mobile gaming comes as the company increasingly positions Xbox cloud gaming as “an option for mobile gaming on emerging handheld devices.” Microsoft soon supported Xbox cloud gaming on Valve’s Steam Deck platform, followed by a partnership with Logitech and Razer for their cloud gaming-focused handheld. That means the push for mobile gaming could happen on multiple fronts — not just phones and tablets.
However, as part of the survey, the CMA did little to discuss Microsoft’s potential entry into the mobile gaming market, focusing primarily on console gaming. Microsoft believes that console games represent a smaller and smaller share of the overall market.
In a chart released, Microsoft said the overall gaming market will be worth $165 billion in 2020, with the console market worth $33 billion (20%), the PC market worth $40 billion (24%), and the mobile gaming market worth $85 billion (51%).
In addition, to attract third-party game developers, Microsoft has committed to a set of principles that allow developers to freely run their own app stores on its Xbox mobile platform and provide their own payment systems to handle in-app purchases, i.e. not enforce Take a cut, which is impossible on Apple and Google’s platforms.
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