On the home front, things aren't looking great for the Microsoft/Activision merger. The FTC has sued to block the deal, and although Activision CEO Bobby Kotick is still confident that Microsoft's $70 billion purchase will still happen by next summer, not everyone shares his optimism.
That sort of makes it all the more important for other world governments to rubber-stamp the merger. The UK's CMA has yet to offer an opinion, but it has published the opinions of the companies involved as well as a mysterious game developer whose name has been redacted.
Industry insider Tom Warren published the CMA statement on Twitter, which largely praises Microsoft for its innovation in cloud gaming and game subscription services. The response lists several arguments that support Microsoft's merger with Activision, stating that Sony is just being a market incumbent that doesn't want to upset the status quo.
"The CMA should ensure it is focused on seeking the best outcome for consumers and not act as an impediment to greater choice, nor to the furtherment of innovation in developing markets such as cloud gaming," wrote Market Participant A. "By contrast, it seems that Sony may be looking at this transaction through the lens of a hardware company and not with the future development of the industry in mind."
So who might be coming to Microsoft's defense in its time of need? Well, the fact that the only game mentioned in the letter is Fortnite seems to give us a hefty clue. "This industry is far from static and one that frequently has new entrants that have the ability to quickly capture market share, such as had happened with Fortnite."
This is mere speculation, but Epic could be trying to give Microsoft a boost as a more powerful Microsoft would help Epic's fight on mobile with Google and Apple. A tit-for-tat play, as it were. We'll see if it works when the CMA offers an opinion in the coming weeks.
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