Microsoft Goes To Court Against The FTC To Defend Activision Purchase

Microsoft Russian Hacker

Today is a day that many have been keeping an eye on. June 22 is the date that Microsoft goes to court to defend its attempted purchase of Activision against the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

The case is being tried in San Francisco and will last five days. Over that time, a number of high-profile figures are expected to testify, including Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick.

The case itself will conclude on June 29 with U.S. District Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley overseeing the proceedings. Judge Corley’s decision wouldn’t likely come then until after the Fourth of July holiday in the United States.

What Is This Specific Case About

The basis of the case between the FTC and Microsoft is simple. The FTC is suing Microsoft to prevent the company from closing on its $69 billion purchase of Activision Blizzard. Once all the evidence is presented, Judge Corley will decide whether to grant the FTC’s request to stop the purchase until another trial on August 2 in Washington, DC, or to let Microsoft move forward with the acquisition.

What makes this case so important is that Microsoft has until July 18 to close the deal. Should it not happen, the company will have to pay $3 billion in breakup fees to Activision Blizzard or negotiate terms of the acquisition.

How To Follow Microsoft Vs FTC

Insider Gaming will be updating the article below regularly throughout the day with the latest from the proceedings. There will also be a live Zoom audio broadcast for those interested in listening along.

Event
Microsoft vs FTC
Location
San Francisco, CA
Start time
June 22, 2023 11:30
Event status
Finished
Mike Straw
12 months ago

Spencer says that Sony is a "aggressive competitor".

"Every time we ship a game on PlayStation Sony captures 30% of that revenue and they use that money to do things to reduce Xbox’s survival on the market," he said.

"We try to compete, but over the last 20 years we’ve failed to do that effectively."

Mike Straw
12 months ago

After a 15-minute break, the FTC lawyer asked Phil Spencer if he knew about console wars and if Microsoft "lost" the console war.

"As the console wars is a social construct with the community I would never want to count us out with our fans," Spencer said in response. "We are in third place. We are behind Sony and Nintendo in console share locally."

Mike Straw
12 months ago

Once again, the FTC has made it known it doesn't think the Nintendo Switch should be part of the console market conversation. On the Switch, Spencer said:

"The Switch was designed for people to take on the go. It has a battery, it’s a mobile platform people can take it with them. Whereas the Gen 8 consoles require that they’re plugged into the wall and don’t have a screen. Nintendo built a different platform."

Mike Straw
12 months ago

Spencer on what the Xbox ecosystem is: "We talk about Xbox ecosystem as the platform where creators build games for players to play."

 

Mike Straw
12 months ago

Jamie Lawver is the first witness. However, she is the senior finance director at Xbox. That means the courtroom is sealed for her testimony due to the nature of what will likely be discussed

Mike Straw
12 months ago

Hello and welcome to Day 2 of testimony. Today the following are expected to be called to the witness stand:

  • Phil Spencer
  • Jamie Lawver
  • Jim Ryan
  • Dov Zimring 
Mike Straw
12 months ago

Update time: There was a LOT said so far in Sarah Bond's testimony which was the last of the day

  • She stated that Activision wanted a higher revenue share for Call of Duty to be on Xbox
  • She said that Microsoft was working to offer xCloud separated aside from being a part of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate. She said that strategy for xCloud has changed
  • Valve didn't want to sign a deal to bring Call of Duty to Steam
Mike Straw
12 months ago

Pete Hines has stepped down from the stand. Sarah Bond, VP of Gaming Ecosystem at Microsoft, is up next

Mike Straw
12 months ago

Hines on Redfall: "It wasn't as polished as other things Arkane had released in the past"

Mike Straw
12 months ago

Hines says if Starfield was on both PlayStation and Xbox, he doesn't think the game would be coming out this September.