During a recent interview on Microsoft’s TechTalk show spotted by Twisted Voxel, Microsoft Gaming’s CEO Phil Spencer stated that Activision Blizzard’s mobile division is a key factor in the upcoming acquisition.
“We know that our DNA as a company is not in mobile. We don’t have a successful mobile platform today. As a company we come from PC, in the gaming space we come from PC and console, and yet most of the players on the planet today play on their phones, and when we looked at ABK, a majority of players that play games from Activision Blizzard King are playing mobile versions of their games.”
Microsoft successfully breaking into mobile gaming would see it stand out from its primary competitors and grow its portfolio, giving it revenue from all three of the primary gaming sectors. Mobile remains the most profitable branch of the gaming industry thanks in part to the lower development costs, larger market share and wider variety of monetisation options. Whereas console and PC gaming tends to stay away from advertising, mobile gaming is more likely to offer free-to-play experiences supported by advertising, offering players a way to play for free while still generating revenue.
Spencer highlights the strength of Call of Duty Mobile, which has generated more than a billion dollars in lifetime revenue, and Diablo Immortal, which generated over $100 million within a month of release, as two particularly strong performers, noting that the company has excelled in developing mobile versions of some of its core games.
He also identifies the continuing strength of King’s titles, including Candy Crush Saga, as a factor in the decision.
In August, we listed Activision Blizzard as one of the year’s top mobile game makers.