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Microsoft switches to blockchain tech for publisher royalty calculation

Xbox publishers will now receive royalty statements faster and with less process effort from Microsoft

News of companies doing something involving blockchain and gaming is a dime a dozen of late, but with the exception of some overtures from Ubisoft, we've yet to see major names embrace the technology for gaming-related efforts. That changed today when Microsoft stepped forward to show off its new, blockchain-based process for paying publishers.

Microsoft's new program uses blockchain through Microsoft Azure to calculate royalties for publishers on the Xbox platform. Previously, the company stated that publishers wouldn't learn how much they had made from sales for around 45 days after the end of the period. The hope is that the shift to blockchain tech will speed up the process and reduce the operational power needed to accomplish it.

Microsoft is celebrating the move as a win for efficiency, security, and cost-effectiveness as well, saying that blockchain for royalty payments is a more accurate and secure method than their previous method of manual calculations. The company hopes these improvements will increase stakeholder trust and reduce time spent on audits in the future.

"Blockchain is inevitable, not a trend," said Deep Ghumman, a partner at Ernst & Young, which lent business expertise to the endeavor. "Executives need to start thinking about its implications to their organization as the underlying technology of distributed shared ledger. It is maturing at a rapid pace. Policies, governance, and regulatory guidelines are being developed so that companies that are ready to embrace this change will be successful in the long run."

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Rebekah Valentine avatar

Rebekah Valentine

Senior Staff Writer

Rebekah arrived at GamesIndustry in 2018 after four years of freelance writing and editing across multiple gaming and tech sites. When she's not recreating video game foods in a real life kitchen, she's happily imagining herself as an Animal Crossing character.

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