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The Case For Apple Buying Facebook

CmdrTaco posted more than 3 years ago | from the large-fortunes dept.

Businesses 255

The article makes the case that Jobs has been hinting that he wants to actually spend some of the $51 billion Apple has been sitting on, and that Facebook is a likely candidate. Considering how thin the Ping social network is, and the integration issues the two companies have had, there are some good reasons for such a deal. And a heck of a lot of reasons why not.

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255 comments

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FRST PASTA (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953540)

yummmmmm

Yep.. (5, Insightful)

Palmsie (1550787) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953542)

Sounds like its time to find a new social media website.

Re:Yep.. (4, Funny)

theaveng (1243528) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953610)

So negative!

Sounds like a good plan to me, and maybe Apple would have the know-how to stop all these privacy leaks.

Re:Yep.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953682)

Oh no, the whole idea kinda scares me since I have it on good authority that APPLE CAUSED THE HOUSING CRASH!

Re:Yep.. (4, Funny)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954108)

Apple can't have caused the housing crash, Apple-made houses have no windows which makes them crash-proof.

Re:Yep.. (5, Insightful)

betterunixthanunix (980855) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953696)

What makes you think Apple is interested in your privacy? Apple is interested in money, and when it comes to Facebook, you are the product, not the customer.

Re:Yep.. (1)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954318)

What makes you think Apple is interested in your privacy? Apple is interested in money,

Indeed. For example, Apple likes to require credit card info for iTunes store membership, even before you agree to buy something from them.

Re:Yep.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953772)

Are you serious?

Ping is even worse than Facebook. If you don't use your billing name for Ping, your account gets broken, and if you do, any anonymous review you have ever written on iTunes gets retrospectively changed to your full billing name.

Not that Facebook's privacy issues aren't a major problem, but Apple is no better at all.

Mod parent +5 Funny. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953872)

Apple, caring about privacy, high-larious.

Not only is Ping worse, generally Apples stance on privacy is pretty poor. Worse so than Facebooks in fact.

Re:Yep.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954630)

Yeah, wasn't it the iPhone that was hacked in under 30 seconds?

Re:Yep.. (1)

dattaway (3088) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953820)

I thought slashdot was the only social website...

Re:Yep.. (4, Insightful)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953916)

Its arguably the most long lived social website.

Re:Yep.. (1)

Miseph (979059) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954298)

As opposed to the antisocial site Livejournal.

Re:Yep.. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954352)

As opposed to the antisocial site Livejournal.

Well, if you don't like it, you can fuck off and leave us alone!

Wait, hang on...

Re:Yep.. (1)

Pharmboy (216950) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954588)

/. is the anti-social network. Even myspace and ping don't allow anonymous cowards.

Re:Yep.. (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953904)

Sounds like its time to find a new social media website.

Why?

Facebook + Apple = ... (5, Funny)

zooblethorpe (686757) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953938)

The new, improved! Fapple!

Yah, I'd want a different social media website too. And a shower. Yech.

Cloud of smugness!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954066)

Well, two megalomaniac assholes CEOs together are better than one. Imagine the cloud of smugness in that room??!!

Daydreaming (1)

microbee (682094) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953544)

Facebook won't sell for 50b

Re:Daydreaming (4, Funny)

Trent Hawkins (1093109) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953664)

100 billion dollars [raise pinkie to lip]

Re:Daydreaming (2, Funny)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953754)

Sharks included?

Re:Daydreaming (4, Funny)

Cwix (1671282) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953874)

I think Steve wont be interested unless they come pre-installed with the laser beams.

Re:Daydreaming (1)

dasdrewid (653176) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954340)

They'd have a little sticker over the optics that says "Don't laser people."

Re:Daydreaming (1)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954006)

I'm sure the guy that ran MySpace thought the same thing in 2006... though honestly I don't see Apple bothering w/ Facebook - it's not even near any of Apple's core competencies.

(I mean, hell - I think it would massively funny for Apple to buy Dell, just for the pleasure of firing Michael Dell and have of India. Or maybe wait a couple of years and buy Microsoft outright. OTOH, I doubt that either of those would serve Apple's purposes, ne?)

Re:Daydreaming (1)

CarpetShark (865376) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954358)

"though honestly I don't see Apple bothering w/ Facebook - it's not even near any of Apple's core competencies."

Oh no? Why did they try to setup their own social network with me.com and iChat then?

I think Apple would LOVE to own facebook. Combine that with Facetime, and they have not only caught up with (probably overtaken) msn, but are the next Skype too.

Re:Daydreaming (1)

postbigbang (761081) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954410)

I don't think so. Facebook is the same pet rock fad as MySpace. Something will eclipse it, as Zuckerberg et al don't get the privacy message. Once people start feeling secure again, a more useful site that has a better economic model will be the next pet rock. Apple only markets their own pet rocks.

Not that stupid (4, Insightful)

Capt.DrumkenBum (1173011) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953546)

Apple tends to buy things that will make them money. I really doubt Facebook would ever make any money for Apple. (Or anyone for that matter.)

Re:Not that stupid (3, Interesting)

bcmm (768152) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953624)

They could use it to promote their other stuff. For example, suppose all mobile devices that weren't iPhones had somewhat flaky Facebook integration, but iPhones "just worked" with Facebook. Even better, suppose they set up some odd licensing conditions, making it hard for competitors people to mention Facebook in their mobile adverts.

Knowing their abilities with marketing, they could easily convince people that it was the only good way to use Facebook on the go, especially since it would tie in nicely with their existing "you are a cool person with a large social circle" branding.

Re:Not that stupid (1)

peacefinder (469349) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953712)

... suppose all mobile devices that weren't iPhones had somewhat flaky Facebook integration, but iPhones "just worked" with Facebook.

But "just working" with Facebook is itself a bug.

Re:Not that stupid (3, Interesting)

mark72005 (1233572) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953720)

the Facebook for iPhone app is pretty crappy right now. You can't do much with it.

There's a little incongruency though, in that because the iPhone has a real web browser, it's a lot better to just go to the full website (full functionality).

the Facebook for iPhone app is good for browsing quickly while on the go, but if you want to actually do anything beyond look at a status, a bookmark to the .com is much better.

Re:Not that stupid (1)

ckaminski (82854) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953786)

Except all the browsers I've tried so far (Android and iPhone) fail on browsing the popup selectors. Anything with an embedded scrollbar doesn't work right.

Haven't tried with iOS 4 yet, maybe this defect has been fixed.

Re:Not that stupid (1)

mark72005 (1233572) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953832)

No, the embedded scrollbar thing is still an issue.

Pretty annoying for vbulletin sites and facebook, as you say.

Re:Not that stupid (1)

Xtravar (725372) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954396)

Uh? The Facebook app for the iPhone is renowned as one of the better apps out there. Perhaps you are trying to do something that doesn't need to be done remotely on a phone. The Android version could use some work, though.

Re:Not that stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954442)

FaceBook chat (really the only reason I use facebook anymore) doesn't show up in the browser, but does show up in the app. Only reason I have the app either.

Re:Not that stupid (5, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953852)

...Except for the fact that Facebook has an elevated self-worth at the moment. Social networks really only have a lifespan of a few years before they are no longer used by the masses.

If Apple wanted to buy Facebook, they should have done it a few years ago, or perhaps a few years in the future. If Apple buys it now, they have a very limited amount of time before the feature is still a feature.

FB has very little IP, the only thing they have is users and brand recognition but MySpace also had that but essentially lost it.

Re:Not that stupid (2, Funny)

statusbar (314703) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953912)

That was before Farmville.

I know people who own farms who spend just as much time on Farmville as they do working on their real farms.

--jeffk++

Farmville is worth the same as what it produces .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953966)

.... NOTHING.

Farmville is just a stupid free game that idiots became addicted to. It is worth nothing because it has no real value.

Re:Farmville is worth the same as what it produces (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954192)

You know what else is a stupid free game that idiots become addicted to? Shakes & Fidget - The Game [sfgame.us] .

Re:Farmville is worth the same as what it produces (1)

JonySuede (1908576) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954508)

I curse you for giving me that link

Re:Farmville is worth the same as what it produces (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954550)

Common Medal of Friendship += 1

Re:Not that stupid (2, Funny)

RapmasterT (787426) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954618)

...Except for the fact that Facebook has an elevated self-worth at the moment. Social networks really only have a lifespan of a few years before they are no longer used by the masses.

What are you talking about? You're talking like some of the biggest Internet companies in the world are just passing fads? That millions of users will just dry up and blow away? where are they going to go? Take all the trouble of learning some NEW website (which you probably don't' think will last long). Fact is dotcom acquisitions are solid investments for larger traditional companies, I just read that in an article from AOL-Time Warner. (see what I did there?)

Re:Not that stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953666)

Even if it did make money it would not matter. facebook==bad press. Steve Jobs hates bad press. Job's skin is too thin, and he is too much a puritan for the social web. Seems more like some blogger needs to drum up page hits and happens to have an android phone while sitting at the bar.

Re:Not that stupid (1)

mark72005 (1233572) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953686)

Agreed. I don't see how this would ever pay itself back.

I know Facebook is valuable because of the sheer volume of information about individuals in contains and the high site traffic, but I don't see how the value could ever be repaid with advertising and product cross-promotion.

Re:Not that stupid (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954196)

Apple tends to buy things that will make them money. I really doubt Facebook would ever make any money for Apple. (Or anyone for that matter.)

How did this get flagged "insightful"? Facebook is the new MS. Not only do they have revenue, but the revenue on the way is _ASTRONOMICAL_

Re:Not that stupid (1)

imgod2u (812837) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954446)

Would that be why they just released Facebook-for-music on iTunes?

Reason #1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953562)

only posting from an iPhone would be one reason not to let Apple have facebook

Apps (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953574)

Since all of /. knows how tight Apple is with its apps, perhaps an Apple acquisition of facebook would force the latter to get rid of all the stupid apps present therein...

One could hope.

Re:Apps (1)

IB4Student (1885914) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953596)

Apple still let's a lot of useless ones in. The ones that they block out are the ones that are too good for us.

Re:Apps (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953616)

As opposed to Apple's thousands of fart apps?

Sounds Good (4, Funny)

SilverHatHacker (1381259) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953590)

Let Microsoft buy Adobe, then let Apple buy Facebook. That way, they're all in one place when we nuke them from orbit.

i no longer use any adobe (1)

chronoss2010 (1825454) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953640)

not hard to quit facebook too

Facebook... (1)

mark72005 (1233572) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953746)

I wish I could quit you

Oblig... (1)

jjiimmyyt (1182465) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953674)

Let Microsoft buy Adobe, then let Apple buy Facebook. That way, they're all in one place when we nuke them from orbit.

Its the only way to be sure

Re:Sounds Good (1)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953770)

You silly goose, Adobe and Apple will be on opposite ends of the Earth no matter who owns them, we'll have to nuke at least 2 sites.

The perfect investor would be... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953602)

the CIA. Question is how do they cover their tracks?

Re:The perfect investor would be... (3, Funny)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954218)

The Canadian Industry Association? What about them?

simple... (5, Insightful)

syngularyx (1070768) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953662)

Usually Apple buys small, "cheap" and useful companies and Facebook doesn't belong to any of these categories.

Shelf Life (2, Interesting)

Kenshin (43036) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953670)

I don't think Jobs is dumb enough to buy Facebook.

Right now it's the darling of the social internet, but a few years ago that title belonged to MySpace. Remember MySpace?

These sites don't have a very long shelf life. They're popular for a few years, and then they die off when the next, newest popular social media site takes off.

Re:Shelf Life (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953742)

Agreed. Jobs may be a lot of things but he is not that stupid.

Re:Shelf Life (1)

microbee (682094) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953926)

More accurately, Jobs doesn't believe in hypes. Even those he created himself.

Re:Shelf Life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953846)

I know this is a popular idea on Slashdot, but I don't think it's correct. Facebook is here to stay, simply because they have their app store. At this point, they are such a monopoly over the social networking market that they could last for years without lifting a finger and still stay on top. Like Microsoft, they don't have to innovate any more, they can rest on their laurels for the next 40 years. Now, neither Microsoft or Facebook will rest on their laurels (well, Microsoft will probably struggle to do anything but embrace-extend-extinguish because they don't know how to do anything else, but they also have Microsoft Research, so any company wanting to do anything will have to license their patents), so it is very unlikely that they will be upset in our lifetimes.

Re:Shelf Life (1)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954206)

Apps are amazingly portable. Folks who love playing Farmville or whatnot can just as easily go to the app's own website (like, say, farmville.com) and play the same game sans facebook. Wouldn't be surprised if Zynga and such didn't already have something in place to link multiple social site accounts to one particular player (say, JoePublic can link his FB, MySpace, or SonOfFacebook accounts all together).

Re:Shelf Life (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954038)

I disagree with the MySpace comparison. MySpace never had moms and grandparents on it. Facebook is basically the World of Warcraft of social networking. It wasn't first, but it blew away the competition. Now its so popular, so ingrained in the lives of so many people, that its going to take a long time for something revolutionary enough to come along and take it down.

Re:Shelf Life (1)

memeplex (910698) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954420)

I must agree with you about the family aspect. My mother had never heard of MySpace, but she, my dad, sister, cousins, high-school and college friends are ALL on FB and use it almost daily. Facebook has crossed the threshold, just as Google did (and I used the Mom test for that, too.) Once my Mom said she needed to Google something, I knew that race was over. I have no great love for FB, but it's won.

Re:Shelf Life (2, Insightful)

Jeff DeMaagd (2015) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954052)

While I agree with the concept, changes in social media dominance might not come so quickly.

Before Google came along, a new search engine became dominant every few years. With Google, the situation seems to have stabilized, Bing took a bite, but they don't seem to be going further with the momentum.

MySpace (2003) is only 1 year older than Facebook (2004). Friendster was founded in 2002, the early "baby" years were tumultuous, but the landscape seems to have matured such that significant changes are slower to come by. New features of upcoming sites can be co-opted before they threaten the big players, as you might have seen with Facebook taking on some Twitter-like notions, such as the feed.

Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (4, Interesting)

jandrese (485) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953672)

So there are a million reasons this would be a terrible idea, but there is one potential benefit: Facebook could finally receive the badly needed usability revamp that it has needed for years now. If there's one company that knows how to make interfaces, it's Apple, and the confusing mess that is Facebook is long long overdue for a major reworking.

Re:Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (1)

ckaminski (82854) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953838)

Aside from some data consistency issues (related to the whole BigTable nonsense) - I find Facebooks UI pretty damn easy. A UI refresh is one thing they DON'T need, IMHO.

Re:Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (1)

jandrese (485) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953906)

What about the difference between the two news feeds? Setting up permissions? Groups? Hell, even navigating the profile is a pain in the rear. There's a lot on Facebook that needs fixing.

Also, Jobs could come in and say "Because we want to support the iOS devices, no Flash will be allowed on Facebook anymore". That would be a massive improvement right off the bat. At the very least it would shut down Farmville for awhile.

Re:Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954146)

Also, Jobs could come in and say "Because we want to support the iOS devices, no Flash will be allowed on Facebook anymore". That would be a massive improvement right off the bat. At the very least it would shut down Farmville for awhile.

No it wouldn't [apple.com]

Re:Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953856)

You are kidding right? I've been trying for years to figure out how to properly add new songs without duplicating anything to my iTunes collection that i didn't buy from iTunes. Wanna try and explain to my dad over the phone how to synchronize his itouch, I'll be glad to give you his number I can assure you he's pretty computer savoy and won't ask any stupid questions.

Just because there is only one button that does anything in an Apple world doesn't mean they are good at making software. It simply means all they could make properly was one button sorta work like they think you should use it.

Re:Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954142)

Right ... Apple interface, my guess they'll remove 90% of the links, buttons and features, and put the rest with glossy graphics and expect you to congratulate them.

Re:Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (2, Interesting)

Bogtha (906264) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954190)

If there's one company that knows how to make interfaces, it's Apple

Sadly, their expertise in software doesn't seem to extend to web interfaces. Their developer portal for iOS development is shockingly bad and I've run across a number of cross-browser problems and missing functionality. iTunes Connect is even worse - I reported a major data loss bug to them that was triggered by using tabs, and their solution was "don't use tabs". Quite honestly Facebook and Apple are right down there at joint bottom when it comes to buggy and just plain broken web apps. Words cannot express how dismal their efforts are. If they were ever to get together and have a web baby, the sun would explode and I would welcome the fiery oblivion.

Re:Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (1)

codepunk (167897) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954440)

That is exactly the first thing that came to my mind also, I love apple products and their os. However, when
it comes to web apps they suck horribly bad.

Re:Maybe Facebook would get a real UI (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954228)

and the confusing mess that is Facebook is long long overdue for a major reworking.

They've been "reworking" it too often, they need to either fix it or stop dicking around with it altogether, they keep hiding things behind different menus, and surprisingly, not the features you'd expect them to try to hide like "privacy controls." They seem to have recently moved their "create event" option on the iphone interface for example, I don't know yet where they moved it -to-, but it isn't where it used to be, which was under "events."

bad idea (1)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953694)

They must no realize Facebook is on the verge of crashing. The last thing they need is a company coming in and doing things even more "their way" when it comes to features, user privacy, and apps. Just about every facebook story in the news lately has been negative and warning of danger (and I don't just mean the slashdot news.) I think if Apple bought it, it would be a disaster whether they actively use their usual company tactics to turn it into more of a disaster or not. If you think about it, it's likely they'd start censoring certain things like they do for all their other products and services and add features that their marketing department thinks are "cool" but the majority of people don't like. My prediction is if they bought it, they'd drive it into the ground similar to how Myspace crashed and then raise the price on iPods and iPhones to compensate for the massive loss.

iAD on FB (1)

wr11 (208921) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953718)

What about the huge potential of iAD on FB? Now there is some money to be made. Other things of interest would of course be Game Center and FB integration.

They could buy DELL (5, Funny)

iinlane (948356) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953738)

Buy Dell and close it down. Just to make Michael Dell eat his words.

Netscape, AOL, Facebook (5, Insightful)

Toe, The (545098) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953740)

Once upon a time, there was this amazing company called Netscape. It was so fantastic that this other company called AOL bought it for over $4 billion.

Later on, there was this amazing company called AOL. It was so fantastic that this other company called Time Warner believed it was valued it at something like a quarter trillion dollars, so merged with it.

Later on, there was this amazing company called Facebook...

Doubt it (4, Insightful)

macwhizkid (864124) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953758)

Strategic partnership, sure, but outright purchase? No way. Sure, it's temping to consider the ways Facebook could interface with iOS, but Facebook is valued somewhere in the neighborhood of $30-35B, and Apple only has $50B cash on hand. Facebook is too expensive for what it is -- a neatly designed hack for people to make their own web pages and connect with others. The value of the company lies in the number of active accounts, not the technology itself. And for Apple, a technology company which already has an accomplished marketing department and more publicity than it can ever use, the purchase just doesn't have enough value.

Besides, Facebook has already displaced Google in the areas the two compete in. There would be nothing to add to that particular rat race, but the danger that Google could focus on a single enemy instead of several. Yhe only reason to buy a company is to harness the potential innovation and future success when integrated with your own. Buying a fully-fledge corporation relying on something as fickle as consumer taste is a terrible idea.

Re:Doubt it (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954044)

The only reason to buy a company is to harness the potential innovation and future success when integrated with your own.

And to neutralize a competitor (see google and youtube), but facebook doesn't compete with apple.

Why didn't I think of this? (4, Insightful)

MBCook (132727) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953812)

It's ingenious! How could it not work?

Just like when AOL bought Llamasoft. No, you know what would be a better example? When Fox bought MySpace. That worked out well, right?

This is moronic. This is "I need column inches, and Apple has money and gets pageviews, and Facebook gets page views, so I'll write a column..." nonsense.

What would Apple get out of this? A big messy architecture (in maintaining all those servers, integrating OS X with FB)? A giant target on it's back for even more privacy lawsuits? I don't see any value to Apple in buying Facebook. It would make a ton more sense to just buy up some good ISVs or more hardware companies to help design their products in house.

Wasn't there new Right-Click functions on FB? (1)

filesiteguy (695431) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953862)

I guess not now that Apple comes on board. Maybe they'll have an open-apple function instead...

No way. (1)

MadbowlerHat (1845762) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953868)

Jobs might like this as a gateway to get an 'Apple Product' onto other mobile and computer devices, but unless he found someone to run it with the same energy as he's putting into product development, then it would be a wash. He might look for other ways to get in on social networking, but this is way too big, and will water down their core business....

This again? (1)

mick129 (126225) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953892)

Apple usually [wikipedia.org] buys small, technical adept companies and rolls the new tech into a shiny product. The largest recent purchases have been less than $300 million (Quattro & P.A. Semi). Facebook is overvalued and would burn up more than half Apple's cash reserve. If Apple is "poised to make a major acquisition" as the article suggests, how about a company worth $1-2 billion? That would still be several times larger than any other purchase. This article is silly.

Re:This again? (1)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954136)

Hmmm. Digg are on the ropes, on the market, and run by idiots [wikipedia.org] . They have a large userbase though.

Shareholder Value (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33953910)

Yep, that's really giving back to the shareholders....

Once the stock tanks, they won't be happy about Steve spending their money so easily.

That's Would Be Too Bad (0, Flamebait)

BJ_Covert_Action (1499847) | more than 3 years ago | (#33953932)

It would really suck if a merger or buyout like this actually went through. I use Facebook because it is, currently, the most effective way to keep in contact with 90% of the people that I don't have the time to call on the phone and check up with. It's also a great platform for starting open conversations where my friends from various social circles can interact. To me, it provides a valuable service.

Unfortunately, if Apple bought Facebook I think I would have to close down my profile and find some other platform to work on. I might actually start maintaining my Myspace or something, I don't know. I've been boycotting Apple, personally, since high school after mucking about with iTunes a few times. After realizing how locked down Apple's products are, as well as how belligerent they can be to the rest of your computing environment (honestly, I have never known any other media player program to rearrange and duplicate 70% of my music collection), I decided to not use any of Apple's products from then on.

That said, I wonder if a move like this would cause a lot of people to dump Facebook. I know I am not the only Apple hater within my group of friends, and I suspect the number of folks that might abandon Facebook would be significantly large. This would be doubly so if some other, better social network started coming up around the same time (Some Google product maybe? Or possibly even Apple-seed?)

Re:That's Would Be Too Bad (1, Informative)

mattack2 (1165421) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954098)

You do realize you can turn off "Keep iTunes Media folder organized" and "Copy files to iTunes Media folder when adding to library", correct?

I believe if you turn off both of those, your issues of rearranging and duplicating your collection would be gone. Yes, those are "Advanced" options, since they're likely not what most people want.

Re:That's Would Be Too Bad (0, Troll)

BJ_Covert_Action (1499847) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954470)

Yes, I do realize that and, eight years ago, when I first tried iTunes, I did just that. My media collection was still borked and I had to clean i up manually. Then I tried getting iTunes to play anything other than it's own proprietary format and, back then, it wouldn't. I had to download special converter programs just so I could get native iTunes music into mp3 format. It didn't help that iTunes, back then, was clunky and slow. Many of the options to customize it were a pain in the ass to find. All in all, it was a much poorer experience than windows media player and I freakin' hated that stupid program as well. So I stopped using both.

My solution was to download WinAmp which, at the time, was small, lightweight, simple, and compatible with any media I could throw at it. When I switched to Linux, I started using Xine and/or Rhytmbox. Now on windows I use FooBar. The moral of the story wasn't that iTunes had one crappy feature that was too complicated for me to figure out. The moral of the story was that I had to fight it to get it to do stuff that WinAmp and other media players could just do simpler and easier. Mind you, I am writing about when I tried it back in high school which was almost a decade ago. iTunes was a very different program then than what it is now. But what remained consistent over the years was Apple's attitude and theme of, " Let us control your data and hardware and we will protect you from anything that might scare you or force you to think." Hence, I dropped the company and, since I haven't seen that mantra change at all as they grew popular, I have had absolutely no incentive to try any of their products out again.

I have my reasons for my decisions. And they do go far beyond one simple "feature" misunderstanding with one application on my part.

Re:That's Would Be Too Bad (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954484)

As indicated by numerous posts so far, there is no chance in hell that apple would be realistically interested in buying facebook.

So fear not, your privacy is perfectly safe.

Plus you can continue using your valuable service which allows you to communicate with your friends. Just be sure to keep your replies under the word limit. Who wants to bubble anyway, what is this, some ancient email system?

If, God forbid, apple makes a run for it, be sure (you and your significantly large group) to delete your facebook account straight away lest your personal details fall into Kim Jobs-Il's hands.

Oh, btw, facebook's policy only allows users who are 13 years of age or older. Are you sure you are allowed to use it?

Stretch that dollar. (4, Insightful)

LaminatorX (410794) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954120)

They could take half of that cash and buy Yahoo, Adobe, and Novell. Why mess with Facebook?

Re:Stretch that dollar. (3, Interesting)

Archangel Michael (180766) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954560)

Adobe makes some sense, but not really overall, too much on the PC and no niche for mass consumer sales.
Yahoo doesn't make sense, unless Apple starts viewing itself like Google, and it shouldn't do that.
Novell is the most interesting, if only so they can compete with Microsoft's AD. But again, that ultimately doesn't make sense.

Apple's success of late has been in the consumer device market. Along those lines, buying Nintendo makes much much more sense. The Wii is a good Apple like product, simple device that is popular with all but the hardcore Xbox boys. Xbox and PS3 are owned by large corps and likely not on the market (assuming Nitendo is). Nintendo would make an awesome media server for a house. Hell with Netflix Channel now running it freakin feels like an iPhone.

The only other thing I would think Apple would be aiming for would be content delivery channels (Cable/SatTV), or content that is delivered (Netflix).

I'd rather live in an Apple world than a Gates 1 (1)

WillAffleckUW (858324) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954154)

At least then we'd have privacy as more than an afterthought after all the FB users get outraged once again.

And we wouldn't have chairs thrown at us.

facebook already past it's prime (3, Insightful)

papasui (567265) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954204)

Both my wife and myself have deleted our facebook accounts. Last time I was in that situation it was with Myspace. Remember Myspace?

Re:facebook already past it's prime (0, Troll)

RapmasterT (787426) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954634)

Last time I looked your wife's account was active...and relationship status was "looking".

sorry for the abuse, but that's what you get for having a facebook account in the first place.

iAds (1)

Maskirovka (255712) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954258)

Facebook is the advertising industry's darling because it allows them to do super accurate and granular ad targeting. iAds not performing as well as expected? Build an integrated ad platform with iAds, iOS, and Facebook. That said, can Apple buy Facebook pre-IPO?

What is big (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#33954332)

I wouldn't consider facebook a BIG deal.. perhaps if Apple picked up Oracle or Intel, that would be a BIG deal.

Your data is safe with Apple (5, Funny)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954572)

Facebook staff have been amazed to discover that when Facebook passes users' complete details to application developers and advertisers, some of the partner companies might accidentally let slip the information in some manner [newstechnica.com] .

"We are appalled at this information leak," said Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg as he took a break from his personal RSS feed of drunk women's tits posted to his service. "But I can assure you that we have sternly suggested to everyone involved that they take somewhat greater care not to get caught, and maintain a serious demeanor when rolling around in the great big pit filled with money in their basement."

"I'm horrified and outraged," said office worker Brenda Busybody, 43 (IQ), "that stuff I put on the Internet is on the Internet. It violates everything I expect. I want privacy when I'm calling my boss a useless fuckstick to the entire world, all my coworkers and my boss himself. And when I'm playing a bit of FarmVille before we nick off down the pub."

Privacy advocates are working on Diaspora, a security-enhanced social network so far populated by Linux users who cryptographically sign every update about which episode of Babylon 5 they just finished watching alone in their parents' basement. "START PGP KEY BLOCK!" said open source software advocate Hiram Nerdboy, 17. "WE WILL PROTECT YOUR FREEDOMS!" The next version of Diaspora will allow users to list more than three friends, should there be any demand whatsoever for such a feature.

Facebook works on the now-standard "Web 2.0" business model: 1. Brutally sodomise the personal privacy of anyone who comes within a mile of your service and say "hey baby, I'm sorry" every time you're busted. 2. Sell ads.

If Apple bought Facebook (5, Funny)

Rix (54095) | more than 3 years ago | (#33954592)

  • You could only view it on Safari
  • Only iPhones would have a mobile client
  • You'd have to update your status through iTunes
  • It would cost $99/year
  • You could only access it through AT&T's ISP
  • If you switched computers, all your photos would have to be reuploaded
  • You'd have to sign an NDA
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