Xbox boss Phil Spencer recently touched on the reasoning behind the Activision Blizzard acquisition, noting that the mobile market is a big part of why the move took place.
The year obviously started with a bang when Microsoft announced it planned to acquire Activision Blizzard, but the reasoning behind it, aside from more money in the long term, wasn’t completely clear. But speaking to Bloomberg, Spencer has shed some light, and it seems that having more games on mobile, and a bit more on PC, was the main driving force behind the acquisition.
“The biggest gaming platform on the planet is mobile phones,” said Spencer. “One and a half billion people play on mobile phones. And I guess, regretfully as Microsoft, it’s not a place where we have a native platform. As gaming, coming from console and PC, we don’t have a lot of creative capability that has built hit mobile games.”
Spencer goes on to explain that when you’ve been around the video game space for a while, you’ll “know most of the creators out there.” Which in turn means you’ll be aware of what might or might not work for your own needs, at least when talking about acquisition.
“But we really started the discussions, internally at least, on Activision Blizzard around the capability they had on mobile, and then PC with Blizzard. Those are the two things that were really driving our interest.”
Mobile being of great interest to Microsoft isn’t surprising at all, considering Diablo Immortal managed to take in a ridiculous $100 million in just eight weeks after it launched.
In 2020, Activision all expressed interest in making mobile adaptations of all of its franchises in an investors call, and considering it has a number of very popular titles like World of Warcraft and Overwatch to hand, there’s plenty for Microsoft to gain.