Google reportedly in talks to buy WhatsApp for $1 billion

WhatsApp, the wildly popular messaging app, is rumored to be negotiating a huge deal with Google that sees the company being bought out for $1 billion dollars. Tech site Digital Trends is making the claim thanks to an “inside source.”

The site says that its source claims WhatsApp and the search giant have been in heavy talks about what price it should sell for.

“While the deal started four or five weeks ago, we’ve been told that WhatsApp is “playing hardball” and jockeying for a higher acquisition price, which is “close to” $1 billion now.”

If this deal is legit, it’ll be the second major messaging/social app that would hit the billion dollar mark (Facebook’s buyout of Instagram being the first). WhatsApp is a big name that Google could make a significant splash with, especially since its been focusing on bringing all its messaging services together under the name Google Babel.

WhatsApp is the number one paid app in more than 100 countries and it has a user base that spreads throughout more than 100 countries and 750 mobile networks. This is what makes the app so damn attractive to huge companies like Google. Unlike Instagram, WhatsApp is already making money through its .99 yearly subscription and its partnerships with international telecommunications companies. Digital Trends source thinks that the company makes around 100 million dollars a year in revenue.

This all sounds good. However, there’s still a bit of a grey area about why Google would feel the need to go through hell and highwater to acquire WhatsApp. Google has more than enough capable messaging services already such as GTalk, Google Voice, Google+, etc.

Hell, Google can just create its own competitor on the cheap by integrating all the services in one (hence: the Google Babel rumors), so why buy WhatsApp for a billion?

So like every rumor, take this with huge grains of salt.

[via Digital Trends]

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