Microsoft makes billions from its gaming arm, Xbox, every year. But, all things considered, this is chump change for a giant worth nearly $2 trillion. That isn't to say that Xbox isn't worth much to Microsoft. Rather, it's not indispensable. So, what the most recent reports say isn't impossible.
As Microsoft moves to acquire Activision Blizzard King for nearly $70 billion, several regulators like the FTC, CMA, and the EU, are blocking it from happening.
Now, some are saying that Microsoft might drop Xbox if the deal doesn't push through.
At the moment, Microsoft has until June to complete the buyout. If the purchase fails, Microsoft will have to pay Activision Blizzard $3 billion in penalties, although it shouldn't surprise us if Microsoft asks for an extension. But, Microsoft is willing to fight tooth and nail to assimilate Activision Blizzard into the company. However, if all else fails, several industry "pundits" believe that Microsoft might be willing to sell the Xbox brand to willing buyers.
Andy Robinson broke the news on Twitter, saying:
Regardless of Spencer's words, I know a lot of industry pundits think MS selling off Xbox is a genuine possibility should this be blocked (I still expect it to go through with concessions).
Capitalism has proven time and again that conventional logic really doesn't matter much if the graph doesn't point up enough.
I don't expect it to happen, but I can say with authority that some important people do.
Finding a buyer for the Xbox as a brand and company is easier said than done. It will take plenty of financial gymnastics to make this work as well, but you can't deny that the allure of owning one of the top three gaming giants is enough for other companies to show interest.
We know Apple has the money to do it and Amazon would likely also be interested. The multinational conglomerate has desperately tried to make a mark in the gaming industry for years. The Xbox brand is a surefire way inside the gaming industry compared to the billions it has spent in recent years. Although we won't deny that it'd be fun to think about Apple owning Xbox, if only just so it can get the rights to Halo back after dropping it like a hot potato.
Tencent and Disney are other names that could throw themselves into the mix.
Of course, at this point, we're just naming who can afford to buy Xbox and we're pretty sure Microsoft won't close shop anytime soon despite its recent "financial struggles".
Keep in mind that Phil Spencer is confident enough to say that the Xbox brand will survive without Activision Blizzard, and he's right. Halo might no longer be a marquee console-selling brand, but Xbox still has an embarrassment of riches before you factor in ZeniMax Media.
Ultimately, it's best to take this for what it is - a thought exercise.
In other Microsoft news, fans are waiting for the tech giant to confirm when the Starfield showcase will take place. At the moment, fans are expecting a release date delay announcement following the "confirmation" that first-party titles such as Redfall and Forza Motorsport are coming out before the first half of the year ends.