In this week’s newsletter, we’re excited to announce an initiative we’ve wanted to do for a long time, as well as share the bombshell of Microsoft owning Call of Duty and many other popular games by Activision Blizzard.
The pandemic has pulled forward technologies more than ever. Developments across industries are also converging into mega themes. In a world like this, we believe a multi-disciplinary approach is needed more than ever, one where experts of different fields come together and explore all these themes with our community.
ABD Expert Circle is a group of individuals who strive for bringing clarity and accessibility towards the most important developments in their disciplines and industries.
In last week’s newsletter, we have announced the five themes. Our community nominations for Expert Circle are now open. We will need your help with identifying people who can help us build the knowledge network and make a greater impact.
If you’re interested in contributing or know someone who’s a good fit, check this out!
Analytics, Digital, Design In Action
Activision-Blizzard Gets Acquired
Microsoft agreed on Tuesday to buy Activision Blizzard (ATVI), the video game maker behind hits like Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, Overwatch, Hearthstone, and Candy Crush, for $68Bn in cash. It is Microsoft’s largest takeover and shows its big bet on its future direction.
ATVI has been battling workplace scandals for the past year. The most serious of which was when CEO Bobby Kotick was found to have known about the allegations of employee sexual misconduct throughout the company, including a rape allegation one former Sledgehammer Games employee made against a co-worker.
While the deal’s standing as Microsoft’s largest may look odd - besides the obvious benefits to its X-Box unit - video games, as we have written before, is among the fastest and most dynamic industry.
More than just buttressing X-Box’s position, ATVI turbocharges Microsoft’s reach into the more nascent VR and mobile industries (and, if you want, its Metaverse ambitions). Indeed, video games have not just engines of entertainment, but also social media and commerce - full-blown platforms.
However, the deal still needs to go through regulatory approval. And while Microsoft has eluded regulatory scrutiny for its latest deals, the changing winds in Washington could stumble the Seattle-based giant.
Meta’s the King of VR?
Specifically, they are looking into whether Meta is using its market power in VR to stifle competition and if the Oculus app store is discriminating against third-party developers that compete against the company’s own software, according to Bloomberg.
Ford has signed a five-year agreement with Stripe, to scale the automaker's e-commerce capabilities. Stripe will facilitate transactions for vehicle orders and reservations, handle financing options for Ford's commercial customers, and route customer payments from the automaker's website to the correct local dealer.
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