Last week, Microsoft – and the gaming industry – saw its biggest deal yet: the $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard. This deal closed after a year and a half of negotiations with regulators in Europe, the UK, and the US, which stemmed from competition concerns in the cloud gaming industry. Now that Microsoft has the green light, Activision Blizzard games, including “Call of Duty,” “World of Warcraft,” and “Diablo,” will be available on the video game streaming platform Xbox Game Pass.

This news could bring in a significant number of new subscribers for Microsoft. Since CivicScience initially pulsed consumer interest when the deal was first announced last year, the percentage of U.S. adults at least ‘somewhat likely’ to sign up for Xbox Game Pass jumped five percentage points. Currently, 8% of polled respondents are ‘very likely’ to sign up for Xbox Game Pass, and 9% are ‘somewhat likely’ to subscribe now that Activision Blizzard games will be included – totaling 17% of potential new subscribers (rebased to exclude current subscribers). This compares to 5% ‘very likely’ and 7% ‘somewhat likely’ to subscribe in January 2022. 

While the full 17% may not actually subscribe to Xbox Game Pass, this figure still signals there’s high interest among those who aren’t currently subscribed to the streaming service.

Activision Blizzard Video Game Interest

CivicScience data examining which Activision Blizzard games consumers regularly play is another good indicator of the potential reach of Microsoft’s deal. Among video gamers not currently subscribed to Xbox Game Pass, 9% of polled respondents play “Call of Duty,” “World of Warcraft,” and “Diablo” at least once a week. Another 8% play “Hearthstone,” and 5% play “Overwatch” regularly – all audiences that could convert and subscribe to Xbox Game Pass.

Additional Consumer Insights on Xbox Game Pass Intenders

Given intent to subscribe is high, further analysis via the CivicScience InsightStore uncovers who’s most likely to sign up:

  • Millennials aged 25-34 years old: Nearly half of this age group is at least ‘somewhat likely’ to subscribe to Xbox Games Pass now that Activision Blizzard games will be available (49%). Gen Z aged 18-24 years old are the second most likely to sign up at 40%.
  • Parents who limit their kids’ screen time: Forty-five percent of these parents are at least somewhat likely to subscribe to Xbox Game Pass, compared to 12% of parents who don’t restrict their kids’ screen time.
  • Americans concerned about paying student loans. Nearly half of Americans who are at least ‘somewhat concerned’ about repaying their student loans are likely to sign up for Xbox Game Pass (48%).
  • Households with an income under $50,000: This income bracket is the most likely to subscribe (22%), with those earning over $100,000 far less likely to sign up (8%).
  • U.S. adults who use public transportation: Over a third of public transportation users are at least ‘somewhat likely’ to sign up for Xbox Game Pass (35%), compared to 7% of those who don’t use public transportation and say the same. 
  • Men are slightly more likely to subscribe: 17% of men are at least ‘somewhat likely’ to sign up, which is slightly higher than the 16% of women who say the same.
  • Americans planning to change cable or satellite providers in the next 90 days: These consumers are more than three times as likely to sign up for Xbox Game Pass (42%) compared to those not planning on changing their cable or satellite provider (12%).

CivicScience has a constant pulse on the latest industry news and how it’s impacting consumer behavior. If you’re interested in learning how you can leverage CivicScience’s database of over four million U.S. survey responses daily, let’s chat.