Google and Nvidia chime in on Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard

Google and Nvidia have joined the growing list of voices expressing their concerns about Microsoft’s deal with Activision Blizzard, reports Bloomberg. Sources familiar with the matter told the site that both companies have spoken to the FTC, currently engaged in a lawsuit to block the deal, to voice their opposition.

The FTC maintains that the acquisition would reduce competition by granting Microsoft ownership of a variety of franchises, something that Microsoft has repeatedly – and vehemently – denied. Both companies claim that the deal could grant Microsoft an unfair advantage in subscription and cloud gaming services, as well as the mobile space.

Google expressly opposed the deal, while Nvidia refused to do so, instead calling for the FTC to consider the importance of maintaining accessibility to games regardless of platform.

Is all fair in love and war?

Despite being one of the world’s most recognisable tech firms, Google has struggled to enter the games space, and is due to shut down its cloud streaming service Google Stadia later this month. However, the company notably has skin in the game thanks to operating the Google Play Store, through which it receives a commission on app sales. Eurogamer reports that a filing with the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) reveals that Microsoft intends to create its own gaming store for the mobile market, and this could result in games developed by Activision Blizzard subsidiary King being taken off of competing stores, resulting in a significant hit to the company’s revenue.

In turn, Nvidia has invested significantly in the development of its own streaming service, GeForce Now, and as such may be concerned that the deal could jeopardise its own ability to draw revenue from the platform. Notably, Microsoft was one of several companies which protested Nvidia’s attempts to acquire semiconductor company Arm for $40 billion, resulting in the deal’s abandonment, as well as the forfeiture of $1.25 billion prepaid to Arm as part of the deal. As such, it’s possible that the company is enjoying a certain amount of schadenfreude at Microsoft’s current struggles to close the deal.

We listed Activision Blizzard as one of the top 50 mobile game makers of 2022. 

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