Microsoft plans to bring in-game ads to free-to-play Xbox games

Microsoft could radically supercharge its digital games revenues with its new ambitious ad tech plan, but are gamers ready?

Published Fri, Apr 15 2022 9:15 PM CDT   |   Updated Mon, May 9 2022 11:00 AM CDT

Microsoft is reportedly working on its own ad tech platform that would serve up advertisements in free-to-play Xbox games.

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Reports from Business Insider say that Microsoft wants to facilitate a platform to bring in-game ads to F2P Xbox games. Sources say Microsoft is currently in talks with ad tech specialists to build a new advertisement platform that will inject ads into specific games, namely free-to-play titles that may include the likes of Fortnite, Warzone, and Rocket League.

Although ad tech is one of the most lucrative aspects of mobile gaming, Microsoft's goal may be to boost visibility and engagement rather than make money. Sources say that Microsoft may not take a cut of the revenues generated from ads. Instead, game developers/publishers and advertisement agencies would share the proceeds.

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These plans fold neatly into the Xbox ecosystem, which has become the envy of platform-holders like Nintendo and Sony because Xbox services all facets of gaming from consoles and PC to mobile devices.

Microsoft's digital gaming ecosystem has been thriving thanks to its service-first approach that emphasizes engagement, discovery, subscriptions, and content above all else. Xbox Game Pass has supercharged the cross-platform ecosystem and is in part responsible for surging earnings to an all-time high of $15.37 billion through FY2021.

Other mobile titans like Candy Crush and Zynga make billions every year from ad tech platforms, the latter of which utilizes a proprietary solution that serves its myriad of popular mobile games.

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Derek joined the TweakTown team in 2015 and has since reviewed and played 1000s of hours of new games. Derek is absorbed with the intersection of technology and gaming, and is always looking forward to new advancements. With over six years in games journalism under his belt, Derek aims to further engage the gaming sector while taking a peek under the tech that powers it. He hopes to one day explore the stars in No Man's Sky with the magic of VR.

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