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Microsoft to buy Activision Blizzard in $69BN metaverse bet

Al Jazeera

Microsoft Corp. agreed to buy Activision Blizzard Inc. in a $68.7 billion deal, uniting two of the biggest forces in video games to create the world's third-biggest gaming company. In its largest purchase ever, Microsoft will pay $95 a share in cash for one of the most legendary gaming publishers, known for titles like Call of Duty and World of Warcraft but which is also grappling with a cultural upheaval over its treatment of women. Activision Chief Executive Officer Bobby Kotick will continue to serve in that role only until the deal closes, a person familiar with the deal said. It's unclear what position, if any, he would take afterward. Once the transaction is completed, the Activision Blizzard business will report to Phil Spencer, who was promoted along with the deal to CEO of Microsoft Gaming.


The metaverse space race will be visible from Wall Street

#artificialintelligence

We are excited to bring Transform 2022 back in-person July 19 and virtually July 20 - 28. Join AI and data leaders for insightful talks and exciting networking opportunities. The past 12 months have taught us that the metaverse is regarded by many as the next major frontier for tech. The furor caused by Facebook's conspicuous rebranding to Meta has shown that the 21st century's biggest technological space race will be fought on the battlegrounds of Wall Street -- but the stock market has also helped to identify some of the forgotten players that will be integral to the mechanics of this brave new world. The race for the metaverse is a unique prospect for the 21st century, primarily because there is little understanding of what such a revolutionary mixed reality digital space will actually look like in practice -- or how businesses will be looking to capitalize on the new technology. So, who will succeed in profiting the most from the metaverse?


News Analysis: MIcrosoft Doubles Down On The Metaverse With $68.7 B Offer For Activision

#artificialintelligence

On January 18th, 2022, MIcrosoft announced its intent to acquire Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion in an all cash offer. Constellation estimates that the combined deal will give MIcrosoft more than 10% of the gaming market. Activision titles such as Warcraft, Diablo, Overwatch, Call of Duty, and Candy Crush join Microsoft's Xbox game pass and PC Game pass. The massive collection of titles and digital assets can be leveraged to grow the 25 million subscribers on XBox Game Pass. POV: Gaming software companies along with movie studios are a great place to build a platform for future worlds.


Microsoft's Activision plan shows gaming will be at heart of metaverse

The Guardian

Microsoft's planned takeover of Activision Blizzard puts the tech company at the centre of two big issues facing the sector: the metaverse and Washington's determination to rein in big tech. The metaverse is where the physical and digital worlds come together, although it is very much at the concept stage. The idea is that you will put on a virtual reality headset and a digital representation of yourself – an avatar – will interact with others at work and play in a combination of virtual and augmented reality. Microsoft has made clear with its planned $68.7bn (£50.6bn) If the metaverse is an immersive world, then gaming – as exemplified by titles such as Roblox and (Microsoft-owned) Minecraft – already offers that experience to its participants.


Microsoft's Activision merger faces real-world barriers to metaverse mission

The Guardian

If the world of Call of Duty seems fraught enough when you are playing it, try being in it. That could be the consequence of Microsoft's proposed $68.7bn (£50.4bn) Announcing the deal, Satya Nadella, Microsoft's chief executive, said that gaming would "play a key role in the development of metaverse platforms". The metaverse is a catch-all term for an immersive experience that blends the physical and digital worlds through a mixture of virtual and augmented reality. This concept is years away from being fully realised, but it is envisaged that participants – using digital representations of themselves, or avatars – will access it through a virtual reality headset, or augmented reality (AR) glasses that put a digital layer over what they see in the real world.