Xbox boss Phil Spencer says mobile is important for audience growth

Phil Spencer
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Xbox boss Phil Spencer has discussed the ongoing Activision Blizzard deal, saying that the acquisition is about "mobile capability."

In an interview with Eurogamer at Gamescom 2023, Spencer explained that Xbox is actively looking to have a mobile presence and that the main reason behind its $68.7bn acquisition of Activision Blizzard is due to the company's mobile presence. 

"The reason we're in the acquisition discussion with Activision Blizzard King is around their mobile capability," Spencer said. "Because it's just something we don't have. We obviously already have Call of Duty on our platform, we already have Diablo on our platform. So it's not about new games that Xbox players don't have access to today.

"It is about a capability on mobile, and some broader ambitions that we have on the largest gaming platform, which is mobile phones."

Spencer was asked about the possibility of the deal falling through, but he explained that he doesn't think in terms of a "plan B" and that "Any kind of other plan for us would continue to be about: how do we find relevance in the mobile space?..."

He added that he knows people think about Activision in the console and PC space but that it's actually dominating in the mobile space, which is in Microsoft's interest. 

"So any other plan would still be about [that]," Spencer said. "We think that for Xbox to continue to thrive, we need to have some relevant place in the whole province."

Despite winning its case against the Federal Trade Commission, earlier this month, Microsoft sent a final report to the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) in an effort to overturn the watchdog's block on the company's plan to acquire Activision Blizzard. 

The company later announced new plans to sell off game streaming rights to Ubisoft intended to directly "address the CMA's concerns."

Check out our list of the best Xbox Series X games if you're looking for something new, as well as the best Xbox deals of August 2023