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Microsoft Xbox Is Promoting Its Activision Blizzard Merger Plans Through UK Paper Ads

Microsoft isn’t going down without a fight when it comes to its acquisition of Activision Blizzard, despite many objections from companies like Sony PlayStation.

Case in point: its recent full-page advertisements in UK newspapers. As spotted by The Verge reporter Tom Warren, the ad appeared on the Financial Times and Daily Mail during the week, claiming that if the US$69 million deal goes through, Xbox will be able to offer Call of Duty to more than 150 million additional players.

This ad is referring to Microsoft’s commitment to bring Call of Duty to Nintendo Switch users; all 125 million of them and counting. And also GeForce Now’s 25 million users. This is also Microsoft’s way to get the deal through and appease the UK’s Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). One of the stipulations to let the deal go through is via behavioural remedies; one example includes having Microsoft promise to make Call of Duty available on other platforms post-merger. Hence, the ad.

Last we checked, Sony argued that said behavioural remedies aren’t enough as Microsoft has many “ways” to “withhold or degrade access [which] would be extremely difficult to monitor and police”. For example, Xbox could release buggy CoD games for PlayStation, despite Microsoft and Xbox offering Sony a 10-year legally enforceable contract to make a CoD game with full content and feature parity for PlayStation consoles. And also the fact that it’s willing to put CoD on Sony’s PlayStation Plus subscription.

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