In a move that could shake up the mobile gaming industry, Microsoft has announced plans to launch its own mobile game store. The market has so much potential that even Netflix has started releasing dozens of mobile games each year.
All of these details come from Phil Spencer, head of Xbox at Microsoft. He says that the move depends largely on whether or not the company’s acquisition of Activision-Blizzard goes through.
“We want to be in a position to offer Xbox and content from both us and our third-party partners across any screen where somebody would want to play,” Spencer told for Finacial Times. “Today, we can’t do that on mobile devices but we want to build towards a world that we think will be coming where those devices are opened up.”
Microsoft first revealed it was working on an Xbox store for mobile devices in the company filed with the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) last year. At the time, the tech giant didn’t provide a timeline for the plan, noting only its proposed merger with Activision Blizzard would play a critical role. Spencer was more direct on Monday. “The Digital Markets Act that’s coming — those are the kinds of things that we are planning for,” he said. “I think it’s a huge opportunity.”
Microsoft seems to have anticipated the European Union’s plans to require app stores to open their doors to rival stores. The deadline for compliance is March 2024. This means that Google Play Store and Apple App Store will have to host apps that lead to other rival app stores, no matter how much they may resist.
Microsoft can’t wait to bring Xbox apps and Game Pass to mobile devices, which is not a bad idea. NVIDIA will also no longer need workarounds on iOS with GeForce NOW… hopefully.
With the potential of such a huge market, it’s no surprise that Microsoft wants in on the action. The company has long been a major player in the gaming industry, and with the launch of its own mobile game store, it could challenge the dominance of Apple and Google. The move also shows that Microsoft is willing to take risks and try new things to stay relevant in a rapidly evolving market. It remains to be seen how successful the new store will be, but it’s clear that Microsoft is not afraid to disrupt the status quo.