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Microsoft is in the middle of attempting to appease regulators to greenlight its $69bn acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Whether it is in Brazil, the UK, or recently in Europe, Microsoft and Activision Blizzard are offering plenty of interesting secrets. That latest is about a lawsuit brought by Epic Games that alleges Google paid Activision Blizzard King (ABK) to not develop its own app store.

Activision Blizzard King (ABK) is the company merger between Activision Blizzard and King, the developer behind Candy Crush and other social games. Microsoft will take control of King as part of its buyout of Activision Blizzard.

In part of the filings to the UK Competition & Markets Authority (CMA), Activision Blizzard that Epic Games brought a lawsuit accusing the company of receiving $360 million not to build a rival app store. On Android, Google’s Play Store is the de facto app store and provides access to King games.

If Activision decided to create its own store to access games like Candy Crush, Google’s store would be directly impacted. Court filings show Google and ABK entered into a three-year deal in January 2020.  

It is worth noting that Epic Games is targeting Google in the lawsuit and not ABK. The company alleges Google was also striking similar deals with other developers such as Tencent Holding, Ubisoft, and others.

Microsoft’s Deal

Microsoft’s $68.7bn acquisition of Activision Blizzard is under regulatory review in the UK and Brazil, among other jurisdictions. In October, I reported on the EU also starting its own review. Well, the European Commission (EC) following Microsoft’s official proposal. This month, the EC said it will begin a formal investigation while at the same time Activision Blizzard remains bullish the merger will be greenlit.

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