Internet search giant, Google Inc., may be poised to acquire the world’s
leading online VoIP service, Skype, according to speculation in the blogsphere
The rumours originated with the UK’s wellrespected Guardian newspaper on
Monday, and have been reverberating through investment firms and the blogsphere
all week. No solid basis has been provided for the speculation, but there are
logical reasons for Google to consider acquiring, or at least forming a
partnership with Skype, which is currently owned by online auction leader, eBay.
“Currently in favor around London’s webbist community is the rumor that Google
has been in negotiations to buy Skype,” wrote Jemima Kiss, a blogger with the
Guardian. “Google bases all of its mobile projects in London, so this is the
fitting place for such a rumor.”
It’s true that Google and Skype have been moving in a similar direction in
recent months for example, partnering with several other companies to fund Fon,
a Spanish startup attempting to build a worldwide network of shared WiFi
Skype and Google also have some shared interests with regard to an upcoming
700MHz airwaves auction in the U.S., where both companies have pressured
regulators to make existing wireless carriers “open up” their networks.
A Google acquisition of Skype “makes sense on a number of levels, particularly
because it fits with Google’s ambitions for disrupting the mobile industry
through its new open mobile phone development platform Android,” Kiss wrote,
noting that a such a deal might also be attractive to eBay, “which was recently
forced to admit that it had paid too much for Skype.”
When asked to comment on the speculation, however, Skype itself remained silent,
insisting that it does not respond to rumours.