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  • Will Apple Buy Facebook?


    Sometimes rumors are so crazy that they just might be true.

    Vague but pointed remarks by Steve Jobs during his surprise appearance on the Apple conference call has led to some speculation that Apple may be considering buying - of all things - Facebook. Peter Kafka at the Wall Street Journal's All Things D blog points out that Apple has a whopping $51 billion in the bank and that they could afford to buy the social networking giant when it goes public.

    When asked yesterday on the earnings call why Apple shouldn't return some of its huge pile of cash to shareholders in the form of dividends, Jobs replied as follows:

    We strongly believe that one or more very strategic opportunities may come along, that we are in a unique position to take advantage of because of our strong cash position. You know, we've demonstrated a strong track record of being very disciplined with the use of our cash. We don't let it burn a hole in our pocket, we don't allow it to motivate us to do stupid acquisitions. And so I think that we'd like to continue to keep our powder dry, because we do feel that there are one or more strategic opportunities in the future. That's the biggest reason.
    Kafka has no inside information suggesting that the "strategic opportunities" include buying Facebook, but he lists the benefits of the acquisition to Apple. First and foremost, Apple can afford it. Facebook is still privately held by Mark Zuckerberg and associates, and has grown from a Harvard-only version of Hot or Not in 2003 to become a company that will have an estimated market value of $35 to $40 billion US when they go public, supposedly next year. Apple could easily cover that and still have money left over to buy a record label or TV studio or two. Secondly, there is the matter of Facebook's enormous user base: half a billion people, or one out of every fourteen humans on the planet Earth, has a Facebook page. Each one of these would presumably gain iTunes and FaceTime accounts, giving Apple unquestioned dominance in online music and video chat. Apple and Facebook aren't currently competing in any realm, but both are competing with Google, and it's probably worth a very large sum of money to Steve Jobs to be able to jab a stick in Eric Schmidt's eye.

    Additionally, there's significant synergy. The Facebook app for iPhone has been estimated to be one of the most used apps on the iPhone, with over 100 million active monthly users. David Kirkpatrick, author of The Facebook Effect, claims that he has heard from "someone who thought he knew the data that more than half of all usage of the iPhone of apps, other than those provided by the phone itself like telephony and email, is coming from Facebook."

    It's pure speculation, again, so it's wise to not put a whole lot of stock in these rumors. On the other hand, there was word last week that Steve Jobs had Mark Zuckerberg over for dinner. There have been no reports on what they discussed at the supposed meeting, but many speculated that it had to do with Facebook-Ping integration. It would be very interesting if the "integration" they were talking about was at a very different level.

    Source: TUAW
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Will Apple Buy Facebook? started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 76 Comments
    1. Aliquippakid's Avatar
      Aliquippakid -
      No
    1. engelke2010's Avatar
      engelke2010 -
      I don't see that happening. But if it did and Facebook was down for some reason, would we be told we were surfing the web wrong?
    1. Forgoten Dynasty's Avatar
      Forgoten Dynasty -
      The only place I ever see facebook going would be google.
    1. z3r01's Avatar
      z3r01 -
      i dont see google owning facebook as they want to make wave better...but i also dont see apple buying facebook
    1. GmAz's Avatar
      GmAz -
      If it does happen, I would stop using Facebook.
    1. iLaw-One's Avatar
      iLaw-One -
      Apple would most certainly redesign it (FB) if indeed they acquire it and I bet the user experience would be just awesome!!
    1. zoso10's Avatar
      zoso10 -
      How can Apple buy out a company that hasn't even gone public?
    1. Forgoten Dynasty's Avatar
      Forgoten Dynasty -
      Quote Originally Posted by z3r01 View Post
      i dont see google owning facebook as they want to make wave better...but i also dont see apple buying facebook
      What about google video? It could just be me but it seems google's motto is "If at first you don't succeed buy something that already has" about 95% of the videos returned by a google video search is just youtube.

      That being said it is pretty uncommon for google to not succeed.
    1. gbarielmoreno's Avatar
      gbarielmoreno -
      I heard a rumor that steve jobs is a robot and apple is going to buy mcdonalds and start serving breakfast all day. I know this rumor sounds crazy, but it might be true.
    1. Zeal's Avatar
      Zeal -
      Imagine the amount of rules Apple would put into FB!
    1. kiddawg's Avatar
      kiddawg -
      Quote Originally Posted by iLaw-One View Post
      Apple would most certainly redesign it (FB) if indeed they acquire it and I bet the user experience would be just awesome!!
      I Totally agree!!... ((as i drink the apple koolaid LoL))
    1. Quaddy's Avatar
      Quaddy -
      facebooktime?
    1. Shinner23's Avatar
      Shinner23 -
      Quote Originally Posted by zoso10 View Post
      How can Apple buy out a company that hasn't even gone public?
      I assume you didn't read the piece? It says:
      Facebook is still privately held by Mark Zuckerberg and associates, and has grown from a Harvard-only version of Hot or Not in 2003 to become a company that will have an estimated market value of $35 to $40 billion US when they go public, supposedly next year.
    1. hollow0's Avatar
      hollow0 -
      Not gonna happen. It's just some silly rumor someone made up. Steve and Mark most likely talked about Ping and how to integrate that with Facebook.

      This rumor is based on someones thoughts on what Apples' strategic move should be since they have a large amount of cash. Not real facts about what they will do.
    1. moon#pie's Avatar
      moon#pie -
      They wouldn't really be "buying" the company. They would just be buying a crap load of market shares so that they can own more than anyone else, thus pretty much being able to control the company.
    1. Evilsaint's Avatar
      Evilsaint -
      It would be epic if they bought it and pulled support from android handsets moving on I don't see it happening even though the benefits apple would gain are quite huge indeed
    1. Nips_19's Avatar
      Nips_19 -
      If they do at least it will be more interesting and not full of crap.

      But I don't think jobs wont waste his time, he must have better things to do with his time. Like buying jeans and a black top for his next conference
    1. Volerikan's Avatar
      Volerikan -
      Facebook App store? It would be cool to have it built right into iOS and OSX.
    1. Funked's Avatar
      Funked -
      If it happens, I'll be waiting on a jailbreak for Facebook
    1. punjabi212's Avatar
      punjabi212 -
      ^^ LOL Facebook jailbreak.