In 2019, Activision Blizzard was considering launching an app store for mobile devices: it wanted to make it itself or in partnership with Epic Games and Supercell. The company announced its plans to Google in an attempt to bargain for better terms on Google Play and other services.

This became known from the documents presented at the trial between Epic Games and Google in the case of the removal of Fortnite from Google Play.

Key points:

  • according to the documents, Activision Blizzard called its operation to strengthen its position in the mobile market Project Boston;
  • Activision Blizzard has organized negotiations with Google to conclude a deal worth more than $ 100 million. With the help of the Activision deal, Blizzard expected to "improve its economic performance in the segments of mobile applications, YouTube, advertising, media and cloud technologies." It was planned that if Google agreed to the deal, the company would abandon plans to create a mobile store;
  • In parallel, Activision Blizzard communicated with Epic Games and Supercell. In an email to Epic Games CEO Tim Sweeney, Activision Blizzard CFO Armin Zerza described the future store as a "mobile Steam". According to Zerza, Activision Blizzard offered to set a commission on the site in the amount of 10-12%. For comparison: the commission in Google Play is 30%;
  • If Google refuses the deal, Activision Blizzard planned to release a minimum viable version (MVP) of the store in 2019 or 2020. At first, it was supposed to be a very small site operating only in the USA. By 2021, less than 70 employees of the company were supposed to be engaged in it;
  • it was assumed that there would be no advertising or other marketing tools in the store at the start. Of the games in it, only King titles should have appeared first. Over time, they were going to add all Activision Blizzard mobile games to the catalog and place third-party games;
  • according to the plan, the Activision Blizzard store was supposed to earn not only on Android, but also on iOS. How the company was going to circumvent Apple's restrictions is not reported.

As a result, the release of the Activision Blizzard mobile store did not take place. At the court hearing, the company's CFO said that creating his own store was nothing more than an idea that was rejected at the research stage.

Earlier, Epic Games claimed in its lawsuit that Google agreed to pay Activision Blizzard $360 million so that it would not open an app store competing with Google Play. Google also allegedly concluded large-sum deals with at least 23 other gaming companies. Among them were Riot Games, Ubisoft and Nintendo.

A source:

The Verge