Microsoft’s incentives to block rivals after activation deal recommended by European Union regulators: Details

EU antitrust regulators are asking game developers if Microsoft is incentivized to block competitors’ access to Call of Duty maker Activision Blizzard’s best-selling games , according to an EU document reported by Reuters. EU antitrust regulators will make a preliminary decision on November 8 on whether to delete Microsoft’s proposed $69 billion (about 5,67,600 crore) acquisition of Activision.

The EU competition authority also asked if By Activision A trove of user data would give the US software giant a competitive edge in developing, publishing and distributing computer and console games, EU documents show.

The acquisition plan, the largest in the gaming industry, will help Microsoft compete better with leaders Tencent and Sony.

Following its decision next month, the European Commission is expected to open a four-month investigation, highlighting regulatory concerns about the Big Tech acquisition.

Game developers, publishers and distributors were asked if the deal would affect their ability to negotiate the terms of selling consoles and PCs through Microsoft. Xbox and its cloud game streaming service Game Pass.

Regulators also want to know if there are enough alternative providers in the market following the deal and in the event Microsoft decides to offer Activision games exclusively on Xbox, Games Pass and streaming services their online cloud game.

They asked whether such exclusivity terms would strengthen Microsoft’s Windows operating system against competitors, and whether the addition of Activision to the PC operating system, cloud computing services, and software tools would help. game-related software gives them an edge in the video game industry.

They ask the importance of Call of Duty franchise for console game distributors, third-party desktop game subscription services, and cloud game streaming service providers.

The questionnaire, with about 100 questions, asks which competitors like Nvidia’s GeForce NowSony’s PlayStation, Google Stadia, Amazon Luna and Games on Facebook can be considered the most attractive after the deal.

Respondents have until October 10 to respond.

© Thomson Reuters 2022

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