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每日英語跟讀 Ep.K304: 微軟併購暴雪撼動遊戲產業 Microsoft’s Activision buy could shake up gaming

· 每日跟讀單元 Daily English

每日英語跟讀 Ep.K304: Microsoft’s Activision buy could shake up gaming

Microsoft stunned the gaming industry when it announced on Jan. 18 it would buy game publisher Activision Blizzard for US$68.7 billion, a deal that would immediately make it a larger video-game company than Nintendo.


Microsoft, maker of the Xbox gaming system, said acquiring the owner of Candy Crush, Call of Duty, Overwatch and Diablo would be good for gamers and advance its ambitions for the metaverse — a vision for creating immersive virtual worlds for both work and play.

Xbox遊戲主機製造商微軟表示,收購這家擁有Candy Crush、《決勝時刻》、《鬥陣特攻》及《暗黑破壞神》等遊戲的公司,對遊戲玩家來說是有利的,也可讓微軟對「元宇宙」的雄心再跨出一步——元宇宙的願景是為工作及娛樂創造身歷其境的虛擬世界。

But what does the deal really mean for the millions of people who play video games, either on consoles or their phones? And will it actually happen at a time of increased government scrutiny over giant mergers in the US and elsewhere?


Is this really about the metaverse? Microsoft says so. And there are some ways Activision could help the tech giant compete with rivals like Meta, which renamed itself from Facebook last year to signal its new focus on leading its billions of social media users into the metaverse.


Metaverse enthusiasts describe the concept as a new and more immersive version of the Internet, but to work it will require a lot of people to actually want to spend more time in virtual worlds. Microsoft’s metaverse ambitions have focused on work tools such as its Teams video chat applications, but online multiplayer games such as Call of Duty and World of Warcraft have huge followings devoted to interacting with each other virtually for fun.


Pushing more people into such virtual social networks will not be all fun and games, however, and could amplify existing problems with online harassment, trolling and identity theft, according to Elizabeth Renieris, founding director of the Technology Ethics Lab at the University of Notre Dame.

Will it actually happen? That’s a big unknown. Regulators and rivals could turn up the pressure to block the deal.


Other tech giants such as Meta, Google, Amazon and Apple have all attracted increasing attention from antitrust regulators in the US and Europe. But the Activision deal is so big — potentially the priciest-ever tech acquisition — that Microsoft will also be putting itself into the regulatory spotlight.


Meta、谷歌、亞馬遜和蘋果等科技巨頭,在美國與歐洲所受到反壟斷監管機構的關注越來越多。動視的交易規模如此之大——可能是有史以來最昂貴的技術收購——微軟因此也會置身於監管的聚光燈下。Source article:

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