Microsoft App Store for mobile games could launch next year
Microsoft plans to launch its own app store for mobile games as a third-party competitor to Apple and Google’s phone software storefronts. That could happen as early as next year, as long as Microsoft’s acquisition of gaming giant Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion is approved.
Apple and Google will be mandated to open their iOS and Android platforms to third-party app stores by March 2024, when the European Union’s Digital Markets Act comes into effect. Maybe that’s when Microsoft can launch its own mobile app store, Microsoft Gaming CEO Phil Spencer told the Financial Times in an interview.
“We want to be able to bring Xbox and content from us and our third-party partners to any screen where someone wants to play,” Spencer told the Financial Times. “Today we can’t do that on mobile devices, but we want to build a world that we believe will arrive where those devices are open.”
But plans for a Microsoft app store are linked to Microsoft’s acquisition of games publisher Activision Blizzard, which US and European regulators say would lead to less competition between big game companies and would lead to players being kicked out of the games. Recent opposition has centered on whether the Call of Duty franchise will only be released on Microsoft’s Xbox and PC consoles, although Microsoft has assured that it will be released on other gaming platforms for coming years.
On the contrary, Spencer said the acquisition would lead to increased competition in the mobile software space, which is virtually non-existent with Apple and Google’s stranglehold on their platforms, as it is very difficult to download software. software outside of their App Store and Google Play Store, respectively. . Microsoft wants a place where users can download its games roster, which would include popular mobile titles like Call of Duty Mobile, Candy Crush and Diablo Immortal if the acquisition is approved.
Evidence of a Xbox mobile store emerged in October as Microsoft filed documents with the UK Competition and Markets Authority as UK regulators review the acquisition of Activision Blizzard.