Microsoft set to launch mobile game store in July to rival Apple and Google

Microsoft has announced plans to launch its own mobile game store in July, as revealed at the Bloomberg Technology Summit on Thursday. By initiating the store on the web rather than through an app, Microsoft offers an alternative to Apple and Google, both of which impose a 30% fee on sales.

Sarah Bond, Xbox president, disclosed that the company intends to debut its first-party portfolio, featuring popular titles such as Candy Crush and Minecraft, on the mobile store upon its launch. Additionally, Microsoft aims to later open up the store to other publishers.

“We’re going to start on the web,” Bond explained. “And we’re doing that because that really allows us to have it be an experience that’s accessible across all devices, all countries, no matter what, independent of the policies of closed ecosystem stores, and then we’re going to extend from there.”

The official announcement follows Microsoft’s prolonged discussions about launching an Xbox mobile gaming store. Phil Spencer, CEO of Microsoft Gaming, previously mentioned in December that the company was in talks with partners about this project, indicating it would materialize sooner rather than later.

Microsoft’s interest in a mobile store was initially hinted at in 2022 when it announced the acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Filings revealed that one of the primary reasons for this acquisition was to bolster its mobile gaming presence. Subsequent filings with the CMA in October 2022 outlined Microsoft’s plans to establish a new “Xbox Mobile Platform,” incorporating mobile games from Activision and King.

While the EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA) compels Apple and Google to open up their mobile app stores, Microsoft seeks to provide an alternative, not only within the United States but also beyond the EU. The move signifies Microsoft’s strategic expansion into the mobile gaming market, offering developers and users a new platform outside the confines of existing ecosystems.

Written by Sophie Blake


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