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Rumour Mill : Microsoft To Buy RIM (And More Perhaps)

Microsoft could be looking to buy Blackberry Manufacturer, Research in Motion (RIM), in what could potentially be the mother of all technology acquisitions, just days after the company released its first touchscreen Smartphone.

According to Reuters (opens in new tab), there's a real chance that Microsoft acquires RRIM if the latter's shares price continue to free fall - RIMM shares lost nearly 69 percent over the last 4 months and should the trend continue down to USD 40 (from a whopping USD 148), Microsoft could be tempted to move in swiftly.

Even then RIM would be worth a whopping USD 28 billion, which even for a company like Microsoft, is a hefty investment (although one has to bear in mind that Microsoft currently has USD 23 billion in cash).

But this would give Microsoft the best of breed when it comes to smartphone technology and would put a price tag of USD 1200 on each of the 20 million or so Blackberry users, which would almost double Microsoft's Smarphone user base overnight.

It would certainly take such a mega-merger to block the likes of Nokia and Google as they try to push for world domination with Symbian and Android respectively.

But there's no real reason why RIM would suddenly want to be acquired. The company has yet to achieve its potential and could in turn go on the acquisition path. Smaller Rival Palm for example is worth only USD 500 million.

But Microsoft's shares as well have been battered losing more than 40 percent of their value since the beginning of the year and could instead look towards relaunching a bid for battered Yahoo! which is currently worth "only" USD 17 billion.

Désiré Athow

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.