Satya NadellaSource: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central

What you need to know

  • Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella recently discussed the company's acquisition of Activision Blizzard in an interview.
  • Nadella also explained how Microsoft's experience in gaming will help it create the metaverse.
  • He believes that the metaverse is "essentially the next internet" and that Microsoft's experience will gaming will help build the metaverse.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella recently spoke with the Financial Times about the company's recent acquisition of Activision Blizzard. The executive related Microsoft's growth in the gaming industry to the metaverse, which Nadella claimed is "essentially the next internet."

The interview between Richard Waters from the Financial Times and Nadella opened with Microsoft's purchase of Activision Blizzard for $68.7 billion, wherein Nadella explained how gaming is more than a "side bet" by Microsoft. The meeting later transitioned to a discussion about the metaverse.

Nadella drew parallels between building the metaverse and creating video games, explaining that making games is about creating a world that people can interact in as well as with. He noted that Microsoft already has experts who know how to make interactive virtual spaces that allow people to perform tasks and communicate with others in a virtual world. It's worth noting that some of these experts have been transitioning to Meta.

"Take what's happening with the metaverse. What is the metaverse? Metaverse is essentially about creating games. It is about being able to put people, places, things [in] a physics engine and then having all the people, places, things in the physics engine relate to each other," said Nadella.

The CEO took it further by saying that people already interact in games in a similar way to what we'll see in the metaverse in the future.

"You and I will be sitting on a conference room table soon with either our avatars or our holograms or even 2D surfaces with surround audio. Guess what? The place where we have been doing that forever... is gaming," explained Nadella.

In the eyes of Nadella, Microsoft's experience in gaming gives it a leg up when moving into the metaverse.

"To me, just being great at game building gives us the permission to build this next platform, which is essentially the next internet: the embodied presence. Today, I play a game, but I'm not in the game. Now, we can start dreaming [that] through these metaverses: I can literally be in the game, just like I can be in a conference room with you in a meeting. That metaphor and the technology... will manifest itself in different contexts," said Nadella.

While the metaverse is a hot topic these days, Microsoft's approach to it hasn't pleased everyone, including people within the company responsible for HoloLens. Some have argued Big Tech on the whole doesn't have a clear vision for what the metaverse is.

Nadella also shared thoughts on the metaverse in late 2021, though those comments focused primarily on working within the metaverse rather than playing.

In related news, Microsoft is reportedly struggling with its plans regarding the future of HoloLens.