PlayFab is a company that has a collection of tools that are created to be used by game developers for consoles, PCs and mobile phones that want to connect to the cloud.
The company recently snapped up PlayFab in a bid to bolster its games-as-a-service business strategy, which Microsoft has embraced over time (most of it's third party games have GaaS elements and are monetized, not to mention Xbox LIVE which thrives on engagement).
"Over 1 billion people play games, fuelling a thriving industry whose ecosystem is evolving and growing quickly", said Kareem Choudhry, Microsoft's VP of gaming, in a Microsoft blog post.
PlayFab is set to compliment Microsoft's other foray into the cloud-based industry, Azure, already housing servers across 42 locations around the world that help to "provide a world-class cloud platform for the gaming industry".
Since Microsoft unveiled the Xbox One, the company made it clear that it believes that the power of the cloud offers many possibilities for gaming.
Microsoft notes PlayFab's tech is a "natural complement to Azure for gaming" specifically because it "enables developers to use the intelligent cloud to build and operate games, analyze gaming data and improve overall gaming experiences".
PlayFab offers game developers with a cloud backend for their games to help kickstart game development. This will save developers the potential hassle of sorting out their own hosting and designing online systems from scratch, and it should work out to be much cheaper thanks to the economies of scale a large company can provide - even more so now that Microsoft has snapped them up. With the acquisition, Microsoft is hoping to pair PlayFab's experience in providing services for connected games, with Azure's worldwide reach.
The acquisition also appears to jibe with Microsoft's announcement last week that all of its first-party games will be included in its Xbox Game Pass subscription service.
Gwertzman said PlayFab's platform now powers more than 1,200 live games for several major media brands, including Disney, NBC Universal, Wizards of the Coast, Nickelodeon and others.
To date, the platform has been behind a number of successful games, including Angry Birds Seasons and Bad Piggies.