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By | 08/11/2022

PlayStation userbase “significantly larger” than Xbox even if every COD player ditched Sony, Microsoft says

Responding to Britain regulator concerns over Activision Blizzard deal.

Listing photo for the Xbox Elite Series 2 controller

Microsoft has responded to a list of concerns regarding its ongoing $68bn effort to buy Activision Blizzard, as raised by the Great britain’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), and come up up with an interesting statistic.

In response to continued questions over whether Microsoft owning Telephone call of Duty would unfairly hobble PlayStation, Microsoft claimed that every COD thespian on PlayStation could move over to Xbox, and Sony’s playerbase would nevertheless remain “significantly larger” than its own.

Microsoft does not become into detail on its mental arithmetic here, only does note elswhere in its comments that PlayStation currently has a console install base of 150 one thousand thousand, compared to Xbox’due south install base of 63.7 1000000.

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That claim is part of a range of comments given to Eurogamer sister site in response to the CMA’s latest report, which otherwise mostly repeats many of the aforementioned concerns raised by the UK regulator – and others effectually the world – already.

For those post-obit the case, the CMA’southward latest intervention will not come every bit a surprise – it is the next step on the regulator’s recent roadmap for how and when it will weigh in with its final ruling. This month, we were due the CMA’s October “issues statement” – and information technology seems that this is the document to which Microsoft has at present publicly responded.

The usual topics are covered – surrounding the potential for the bargain to harm competitors should Microsoft gain also much of an advantage owning Activision Blizzard franchises (mainly, Call of Duty) and therefore existence able to leverage their brand power to become a dominant market leader in the console market and cloud streaming.

Specifically, the CMA sees potential for the bargain to harm Sony but also other streaming services such equally Google (perhaps a moot point now), Amazon and Nvidia.

“Having total control over this powerful catalogue, especially in light of Microsoft’s already potent position in gaming consoles, operating systems, and cloud infrastructure, could effect in Microsoft harming consumers by impairing Sony’s – Microsoft’southward closest gaming rival – ability to compete,” the CMA wrote, “as well as that of other existing rivals and potential new entrants who could otherwise bring good for you competition through innovative multi-game subscriptions and cloud gaming services.”

In response, Microsoft said such “unsupported theories of harm” were non enough to fifty-fifty warrant the CMA’s electric current Phase ii investigation – which was triggered on 1st September.

“The proposition that the incumbent market leader, with clear and enduring marketplace power, could be foreclosed by the 3rd largest provider as a upshot of losing access to one title is not credible,” Microsoft told

“While Sony may non welcome increased competition, it has the power to adapt and compete. Gamers volition ultimately benefit from this increased competition and option.

“Should whatsoever consumers make up one’s mind to switch from a gaming platform that does not give them a choice as to how to pay for new games (PlayStation) to one that does (Xbox), then that is the sort of consumer switching behavior that the CMA should consider welfare enhancing and indeed encourage. Information technology is non something that the CMA should exist trying to prevent.”

The CMA is due to notify Microsoft of its provisional findings in January 2023, at which point it can seek possible remedies to whatever sticking points raised. The regulator’due south last written report – and overall ruling – will then exist published no later than 1st March next year.

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