In a recent testimony during the FTC-Microsoft trial, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella expressed his personal desire to do away with exclusive games but acknowledged that the company’s strategy is influenced by Sony.
Nadella’s comments, reported by The Verge, shed light on Microsoft’s future plans and approaches. When asked about games being exclusive to specific platforms, he stated, “If it was up to me, I would love to get rid of the entire exclusives on consoles, but that’s not for me to define, especially as a low-share player in the console market. The dominant player there [Sony] has defined market competition using exclusives, so that’s the world we live in. I have no love for that world.”
It is important to note that Nadella recognizes the significant role exclusives play in consumer purchasing decisions and their impact on attracting new subscribers to Xbox Game Pass, as highlighted in The Verge report.
In a related development, on June 27, PlayStation’s Jim Ryan, the head of PlayStation, claimed that several publishers have voiced their concerns about Xbox Game Pass. According to Ryan’s deposition, “I have talked to all publishers; they unanimously do not like Game Pass because it’s value destructive.”
Although Microsoft’s CEO expresses a desire to eliminate exclusives, the influence of Sony and the market dynamics surrounding exclusivity continue to shape Microsoft’s console strategy.