The main part of the EU’s warning to Microsoft revolves around the potential for Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard to adversely affect the competition in the video game market due to potential exclusivity for major video game franchises like Call of Duty.
“The move comes after the EU launched an in-depth investigation into the deal in November, finding that Microsoft may in the future be incentivized to block access to Activision’s popular “Call of Duty” franchise,” says the statement by the EU.
“Such foreclosure strategies could reduce competition in the markets for the distribution of console and PC video games, leading to higher prices, lower quality and less innovation for console game distributors, which may, in turn, be passed on to consumers.”
Microsoft, in turn, has released its own statement in response to the EU’s warning. “We are listening carefully to the European Commission’s concerns and are confident we can address them,” said a Microsoft spokesperson.
Several regulatory bodies have been investigating Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard alongside the European Commission, including the UK’s Competition and Market Authority, and the US’s Federal Trade Commission.