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Google said to ponder $1B WhatsApp acquisition
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MacNN Staff
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Apr 7, 2013, 05:20 PM
 
Popular messaging app WhatsApp is the subject of acquisition rumors yet again, this time with search giant Google said to be considering buying the app for as much as $1 billion. The move is said to be part of a wider push by Google to solidify its standing in the mobile messaging sector, and it could play a role in the development of the company's unified chat service Babble.

Digital Trends carried word of the acquisition rumor on Friday, noting that WhatApp's team is reportedly "playing hardball" and holding out for a higher acquisition price. Sources familiar the negotiations say that WhatsApp's team is pushing for a price tag close to $1 billion.

WhatsApp reportedly caught the attention of Google late last year, around the time that Facebook was also said to be considering buying the app. The app is currently the number one paid app in more than 100 countries, having seen 18 billion messages processed in one day on December 31.
     
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Apr 7, 2013, 07:22 PM
 
The fundamental problem with an app like this is you have to convince all your friends to use it too -- otherwise it's worthless to you. That is hard and generally isn't going to happen.
     
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Apr 7, 2013, 07:41 PM
 
Whatsapp has managed to reach a higher-than-expected level of penetration with its target group, however. Whether they've reached (or will reach) critical mass is another matter, but I can easily see why Google wants it. The question the Whatsapp people should be asking themselves, however, is do they want Google? Sure it will make them rich, but what will Google bring to it other than their usual habit of a) turning it into spyware, b) cramming it with more ads, c) leveraging it to hurt iOS users (a serious barrier to adoption if they do that), d) discontinuing it when they get bored/decide its not profitable/not giving them enough sellable information about the users? That's what they do with acquisitions.
Charles Martin
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Apr 8, 2013, 04:50 AM
 
I know a lot of people who use this app. I use it too and like it better than iMessage because it is much faster and much more reliable than iMessage.
{{{ mindwaves }}}
     
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Apr 8, 2013, 01:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by chas_m View Post
The question the Whatsapp people should be asking themselves, however, is do they want Google? Sure it will make them rich, but what will Google bring to it other than their usual habit of a) turning it into spyware, b) cramming it with more ads, c) leveraging it to hurt iOS users (a serious barrier to adoption if they do that), d) discontinuing it when they get bored/decide its not profitable/not giving them enough sellable information about the users? That's what they do with acquisitions.
You neglected the biggest question they'd be asking themselves which makes everything else irrelevant... will I still have a job?
     
   
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