After days of intense speculations and rumors, the news of Microsoft acquiring Swedish VoIP behemoth Skype became official yesterday.
In a pure cash deal of a mind boggling $8.5 billion, Skype is said to become a completely new entity within Microsoft’s business division spearheaded by current CEO Tony Bates.
A wise man once said that in order to be able to get an understanding for what the future holds in store, you are wise in looking at what’s happened in the past.
Based on that notion and Microsoft’s troubled track record in the field of consumer Internet ventures, some pundits might claim chances are the Redmond-based company will spoil a service 600+ million users across the world know and love.
Over the next couple of days, Rebtel will look under the hood of this deal, Microsoft’s largest to date in terms of M&A, and explore what seem to be, obvious next steps.
The first step will be Service Integration; Apple’s got FaceTime, Google’s got Voice. Now, Microsoft’s got Skype. When Microsoft unveiled their next generation Smartphone OS, Windows Phone 7, it did so to much critical acclaim. Unfortunately for Microsoft, WP7 never managed to gain any significant market share on competitors Google and Apple.
Now, with the purchase of Skype, Microsoft are at liberty to deeply integrate a service virtually synonymous with internet calling in their Smartphone OS and seriously boost its value proposition. Safe to say, the mood in Cupertino is far from chipper today.