The Microsoft-Activision case will have its first pre-trial hearing on January 3.

The Biden administration is suing Microsoft (MSFT.O) over its $69 billion bid to buy “Call of Duty” maker Activision Blizzard. The first pre-trial hearing is set for January 3. (ATVI.O).

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which enforces antitrust law, asked a judge to stop the deal earlier this month. They said that the merger would give Microsoft’s Xbox exclusive access to Activision games, leaving Nintendo consoles and Sony’s PlayStation out in the cold.


Microsoft has said that the deal would be good for both gamers and gaming companies. It has offered to sign a legally binding consent decree with the FTC to give “Call of Duty” games to rivals like Sony (6758.T) for a decade.

Microsoft said this in a filing that was meant to persuade a judge at the FTC to let the deal go through.

The case shows that U.S. President Joe Biden’s administration is taking a tough stance on antitrust laws. But antitrust experts say it will be hard for the FTC to persuade a judge to stop the deal because Microsoft is making changes on its own to calm fears that it will take over the gaming market.


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