Microsoft has subpoenaed PlayStation to defend against FTC lawsuit

Microsoft has issued a subpoena to Sony Interactive Entertainment in defense of a lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

According to a court filing, the Xbox maker wants Sony to reveal details of its PlayStation game-making process.

Information that Microsoft believes is relevant to its case may include confidential details that Sony would prefer not to share with its rivals when possible.

“Negotiations between SIE and Microsoft regarding the production scope and discovery timeline for SIE are ongoing,” the document reads.

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After a one-week extension, Sony has until Jan. 27 to take action to limit, rescind or otherwise respond to the subpoena.

In December, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission announced plans to sue Microsoft to block its $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard, which the regulator argued would allow the company to “squeeze” its Xbox console, subscription content and cloud gaming businesses competitors.

The FTC and Sony have expressed concern that the deal could significantly undercut PlayStation’s ability to compete because it would see Microsoft take ownership of the Call of Duty series that Sony called “irreplaceable.”

In response to the FTC complaint, Microsoft and Activision argued that their merger would promote competition and benefit consumers by making the Call of Duty publisher’s games more widely available.

Microsoft has subpoenaed PlayStation to defend against FTC lawsuit

To address regulatory concerns, Microsoft recently said it had offered Sony a 10-year, legally binding contract to have each new Call of Duty game come to PlayStation on the same day it hits Xbox.

The FTC said earlier this month that it had not yet engaged in “substantial” settlement talks with Microsoft over the proposed acquisition. If it goes to trial, the case will be decided at a hearing scheduled for August 2023.