Rumor: Microsoft to buy Skype for $8.5 billion?

It looks like GigaOm's sources might have been on the right track on Sunday when it reported that Microsoft was in talks with the team behind the VoIP Internet phone software business Skype. The Wall Street Journal is now reporting that a deal is close to being struck that will see Microsoft acquire Skype. AllThingsDigital has reported that the deal is in fact done with the story claiming that the asking price could be as high as $8.5 billion.

The storiesm which use unnamed sources, do seem to agree that an official announcement could happen as soon as Tuesday. The Wall Street Journal story says that the the massive price tag would make it among the highest priced acquisitions in Microsoft's history. Previous to tonight, Skype was rumored to also be in talks with Facebook and Google but apparently the huge price Microsoft was willing to pay for Skype may have won out.

Of course this isn't Skype first rodeo in terms of being bought by a bigger company. After being founded in 2003, the online auction site eBay purchased Skype in 2005 for $2.6 billion. However eBay didn't see to know what to do with Skype and sold off a 70 percent stake to several investment firms in 2007 while also taking a $1.6 billion charge. The article points out that if the Microsoft deal goes through those investment firms will get a huge return on their money. Skype did have plans to go public in 2011 but obviously those plans may now be moot.

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Forget WLM (not that it wouldn't be awesome to have better calls on it, but...), if this becomes an essential part of WP7 that would be pretty big

Fortune confirmed the purchase, including Skype debt, for $8.5 billion. It will be officially announced by Microsoft later today.

Then maybe it's time to dump the client then.

One of the reasons I began to use Skype was because it was NOT by Microsoft and it had Linux support...

Tpiom said,
Then maybe it's time to dump the client then.

One of the reasons I began to use Skype was because it was NOT by Microsoft and it had Linux support...


I feel bad because they have been killing support for anti-windows products. For eg, just look at Virtual PC--windows specific only. It was available for Mac but after acquisition they killed it

What a waste of money, while the live tiles and notification system on my WP7 devices completely refuses to work unless I hard reset. Just like how their acquisition of Danger proved worthless so will this be. Time to kick baldy Ballmer out!!!

OK. I wanna see in Windows 8 new merged Skype with Live Messenger and Skype screen sharing feature should be transformed into full remote desktop app like TeamViewer

LOL engadget... the home of anti MS and apple fanboys... i read some comments, some people talk like if they would die of cancer because microsoft bought it. i dont understand some people. but oh well. i know i like microsoft but i dont go to apple/google news and i type alot of crap like if microsoft paid me, and google/apple paid them. they are the only ones who win in the end.

but anyway, i like the news i have never used skype, mayeb now i have a reason at least haha. i like windows live messenger though but i know some people with skype, specially in videogame streams like jtv. they use it alot, starcraft, retrogames, xbox ones... i always hear the music when someone calls or they just show it.

Not to much at all like people are saying, Skype posted a 860million dollar revenue last year so this will pay for its self within a few years as long as they don't **** it. Not to mention all the patents etc Microsoft now own.

If it happen (Which I don't want, because I am no fan of MS), at least I hope that they don't ruin it as they did with messenger: from a simple messenger to an all bloated soft that's full of useless features !!!

ramik said,
If it happen (Which I don't want, because I am no fan of MS), at least I hope that they don't ruin it as they did with messenger: from a simple messenger to an all bloated soft that's full of useless features !!!

Ähm... Live Messenger is the coolest IM software ever...

ramik said,
If it happen (Which I don't want, because I am no fan of MS), at least I hope that they don't ruin it as they did with messenger: from a simple messenger to an all bloated soft that's full of useless features !!!

You think that's bloated? Take a look at ICQ then

As noted before, the majority of that price tag isn't for the actual program so much as the intellectual property behind it. At face value, Skype isn't worth 8.5 billion, but given the IP portfolio, it may well be a good deal for MS in the end.

I use Skype as my home/work phone... reasonable price for a permanent number + free long distance in US and CA. Good deal. And if it becomes more integrated with Windows... fine by me.

Tuishimi said,
I use Skype as my home/work phone... reasonable price for a permanent number + free long distance in US and CA. Good deal. And if it becomes more integrated with Windows... fine by me.

I never used Skype, but I do use Google Voice.

It's going to be a good deal for Microsoft - they've just beaten both Google and Apple, which could be humiliating for those two companies. I wonder how Microsoft are going to use Skype: I'd imagine Messenger would be folded into Skype seeing as it is the better of the two clients (in my opinion at least).

I think it's too much to pay, but this is a HUGE plus for MS, on par with the Nokia deal. Apple and Google are silently cringing over both of these deals. Way to flex your muscle MS!!!!!!!!

They better fix their latest Messenger (remove that ****ing social-integrated kinda thing!!!) and use Skype platform for video conferencing & ability to just call people through Messenger.

Does this mean Windows Live Messenger and Skype are gonna be folded in to each other? Also MS is finally getting somewhere in the online world, sure thriugh buying another company but still

blade1269 said,
Is it me, or do you think MS will ruin this awesome product? What next skype activation?

+1. Not maybe because of activations but sure Skype will die. Worked and saw MS culture and i don't think upcoming months and years Skype will be gone.

sanctified said,
What this means for other OSes?

Jesus Christ i never thought about that, and i'm gonna buy a mac in the summer!

sanctified said,
What this means for other OSes?

Maybe they'll merge the two together; Microsoft Messenger and Skype into one - what Microsoft is buying is the customer base and not the the technology. When it comes to alternative operating systems - meh, Microsoft will support Mac OS X but other OS's will be an interesting thing to watch out for.

Oh yeah, would be a fine deal to integrate into existing MS things.
Actually the Skypesoftware now available is total crap, and the slowest thing I've ever seen...

ive never felt like using it but i see aloooot of people in stream channels using it to talk to people. though i think teamspeak or ventrillo are better for +4 persons, it seems like a nice deal for microsoft.

never used it before and may not use it since i have no need for it in the future
anyway good luck to MS for what they are aiming at

Brent1700 said,

Which will NEVER happen

Oh it will and shall. This has become a somehow holding position in my dealings in and of my life. I like privacy but I demand and have a need to keep up and in touch with others as well as retaining my own zone. This is only need and have to need basis. I rather like a lot of its Pros but one has to live with its cons. But I do not wish to be blunt.

MrTwentyfour said,
Every since fiber optics came in, there will be more demands for services to make the money's worth.

A good amount of landlines are fiber fed. Telecommunications companies do not bury new copper from central offices, or at least they shouldn't. For new housing developments you will most likely recieve your telephone service over fiber. The fiber runs up to a SLC (Subscriber Loop Carrier) terminal where the optical signal is converted to electrical for your POTS signal to travel over.

If it's a single building and there's sufficient live copper in the area then you'll have copper to the central office because it's cheaper.

tl;dr
POTS is increasingly provided over fiber optics

Auroka said,
Hope its true. I'd love to see Skype get integrated with Microsoft services!

Yeah, this could be a really great thing for Microsoft. I can't wait to see what this means for WP7 and Windows 8...

The goo is on google's face. Google still doesn't have the lavish capital revenue like everyone think they do

but hmm...what's now going to become of Live Messenger and Skype? Will they merge into one application, will MS still keep the Skype brandname??

Auroka said,
Hope its true. I'd love to see Skype get integrated with Microsoft services!

I feel that this is good direction but I would like to see perks per Windows OS vr. Like Ultimate owners get Nationally unlimited calls for any calls to/thru your home Country. I would especially like to see Skype for WMP6.5:) Live Messenger & Skype Ultimate Edition...so on

flexkeyboard said,
The goo is on google's face. Google still doesn't have the lavish capital revenue like everyone think they do

but hmm...what's now going to become of Live Messenger and Skype? Will they merge into one application, will MS still keep the Skype brandname??

MS will definitly keep the Skype name, that's why it paid so much for it. We might see something like Skype Messanger as the final name or w/e. I really see no reason to keep the two apart at this point.