By partnering with gaming platforms, Microsoft is trying to convince anti-trust regulators that it won't gatekeep Activision Blizzard properties. This week, the tech giant recently announced that it has signed a ten-year partnership with Ukraine-based cloud gaming platform Boosteroid.
The new deal will bring Xbox PC games and Activision Blizzard titles such as Call of Duty to the cloud platform. The service currently has around four million active users worldwide.
The company didn't go into the specifics of the deal, but it will likely be similar to Microsoft’s agreement with Nvidia.
Here's what Microsoft's CEO of Gaming, Phil Spencer, had to say about the deal:
We believe in the power of games to bring people together. That’s why Xbox is committed to give everyone more ways to play their favorite games, across devices.
Bringing Xbox PC games to Boosteroid members, including Activision Blizzard titles such as ‘Call of Duty’ once the deal closes, is yet another step in realizing that vision.
Ivan Shvaichenko, Boosteroid CEO echoed Microsoft’s statement saying:
Boosteroid shares Microsoft’s vision of bringing games to as many people, places and platforms as possible. It has long been our goal to provide gamers with an opportunity to enjoy their favorite titles on any device close at hand. Today’s announcement is yet another step in this direction. Also, with our development team based in Ukraine, we appreciate Microsoft’s ongoing commitment to Ukraine, and we will be working together on an initiative supporting our local game development community to invest further in the economic recovery of the country.
Boosteroid is currently the largest independent cloud gaming provider globally. The company started operating in 2017. It's currently based out of Kyiv and Kharkiv. The ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine has damaged two of its offices in Kharkiv. However, despite the ongoing turbulence, Boosteroid continues to operate.
In 2023, the company announced that it is bringing the cloud-based gaming service to Mac, Chromebooks, Android set-top boxes, and LG TVs. Boosteroid is offering both browser-based and app-based streaming services for Windows, Linux, Android, Android TV, and macOS.
Boosteroid has a global reach, serving gamers in the US, UK, and EU. The company has data centers in the US, UK, France, Italy, and other European states.
"This partnership builds on the $430 million in technology and financial assistance we have provided Ukraine since Russia’s unlawful invasion, and it exemplifies the steps we will continue to take to support Ukraine’s 160,000 software developers," Microsoft President Brad Smith said. It also adds to our recent agreements with Nintendo and NVIDIA, making even more clear to regulators that our acquisition of Activision Blizzard will make ‘Call of Duty’ available on far more devices than before."
Microsoft is currently seeking approval for its proposed $69 billion acquisition of game developer Activision Blizzard. The company has faced stiff opposition from the US FTC, UK CMA, and EU Commission.