Not to be outdone by Microsoft retail stores, electronics retailer Best Buy is now offering some freebies with an Xbox One X purchase, namely your choice of a black or white wireless controller and 3 months of Xbox Live gold.
EA is one of the biggest publishers in the video game industry, if not the biggest publisher, which means that under their banner there are a ton of games, and apparently this is something that Microsoft could be interested in. Right now, EA seems to be the most likely option to pan out.
"Because of where we are in the lifecycle of all these things, I'm expecting to hear Microsoftannounce something very, very shortly", SuperData Research CEO Joost van Dreunen told Polygon regarding the rumour. It's hard to forecast something like that, but Xbox exclusive Star Wars, Battlefield, and BioWare games aren't out of the picture. But what if instead of exclusivity, Microsoft only required crossplay capabilities for future EA PlayStation games?
Should this agenda bleed into the corporate ethos of EA, good things could come from an acquisition, especially as history proves that the publisher is certainly capable of courageous creativity (Burnout Paradise, Dead Space, Mirror's Edge), even if its the missteps which stand out for most of its customers.
Rumours of such acquisitions appear have been fuelled by the promotion of long-term Xbox figurehead Phil Spencer who will now head up Microsoft's leadership team, a move that shows show that Redmond is serious about its gaming division.
The latter of which we can understand but still find a little unlikely due to the rapid growth and investment that PUBG Corp. has seen of late thanks to the game of its namesake - PUBG. Yes, Microsoft is bloody loaded, and could conceivably fork out for EA's estimated worth of a tidy $35 billion. The subscription-style game service is something that Microsoft is investing in, bringing the "Netflix model" to games.
At the end of the day though, it all comes down to whether or not EA's investors would agree to sell and whether or not Satya Nadella would be willing to give up such a hefty chunk of Microsoft's cash.
As always, though, we caution you to treat these rumors as rumors until we receive official word from any of the parties involved that further steps towards an acquisition have been taken.
KitGuru Says: The number of active studios under Microsoft's wing has dwindled over the years.