SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) – Microsoft announced its big-ticket ambitions to purchase US video game juggernaut Activision Blizzard on Tuesday, a gaming industry record-smashing transaction.
The deal, which is anticipated to close next year, would strengthen Microsoft’s position in the expanding gaming business while also leveraging its capabilities in software and cloud computing.
Here are some crucial points to keep in mind:
Video game giants
According to estimates, combining with Activision will make Microsoft the third-largest gaming firm by revenue, behind Tencent and Sony.
Tencent, a Chinese company, is a major participant in the Asian market and has begun investing in gaming studios outside of China.
Tencent owns Riot Games, the creator of the popular battle royale game “League of Legends,” and has investments in both Ubisoft and Activision.
Consumer electronics behemoth from Japan Sony’s PlayStation systems and games have become more important sources of revenue, as Sony studios continue to produce games for its hardware.
Meanwhile, as it invests in Xbox systems and the trend of games being streamed straight from the device, Microsoft has been expanding to its collection of game companies.
In a letter to investors, Baird Equity Research analyst Colin Sebastian wrote, “To steal from the company’s own lingo, Microsoft’s ambition is to enable users to play games anytime, anyplace, and with anybody.”
Creating the “metaverse”
A future in which people live, work, and play in an immersive virtual reality known as the “metaverse” is envisioned as a logical extension of video games.
Roblox, Minecraft, and Fortnite have all constructed realms in which playing is simply one of many dimensions.
“There’s a whole generation growing up where video games are their social link to the world,” Microsoft games unit director Phil Spencer told The New York Times, referring to teenagers who gather online after school.
Microsoft may so position itself on the future of the internet as a whole by investing in gaming.
“Gaming is the most vibrant and exciting area in entertainment today across all platforms,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement about the transaction.
“Gaming is the most vibrant and exciting area in entertainment across all platforms today,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement about the transaction.
Taking on sexism
A merger would put Microsoft’s gaming boss Spencer on the hook for Activision’s problems with women in the workplace.
Activision has been the subject of government inquiry, litigation, and employee indignation over allegations that women are harassed and discriminated against at the mainly male-dominated firm.
In an interview with the New York Times, Spencer claimed the firm has learnt from its missteps, such as hosting dancing females at a game developers conference six years ago.
“That was a difficult time in Xbox’s history,” he remarked. “I feel we are stronger now as a result of that incident, albeit I would not want to repeat it if I had the opportunity.”
Content reigns supreme – In the realm of video games, content reigns supreme.
Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision might help the company shore up its shortcomings in mobile gaming and esports.
“Microsoft will have a strong position in esports as a result of the purchase, a developing topic in which it has failed to make a presence in the past,” said GlobalData chief analyst Rupantar Guha.
“In addition, Activision is a leader in mobile gaming, with plans to release additional titles in the future.”
“World of Warcraft,” as well as the color-matching mobile sensation “Candy Crush” and the esports-oriented “Overwatch,” are among Activision’s offerings.