VoIP giant Skype is apparently being viewed as a potential acquisition target by social networking behemoth Facebook as well as Google.
Reuters said that discussions about potential partnerships have been taking place, discussions that were strategic enough to cause Skype to delay its Wall Street flotation.
Grabbing Skype would be a great move for Facebook which would, overnight, almost double the number of accounts under its belt to around 1.2 billion, although that total amount would contain a lot of duplicates.
Perhaps more importantly, Skype would bring in constant revenue. For the first six months of 2010, Skype raked in revenue of $406 million with net income of only $13.2 million. In comparison, Facebook raked in $1.2 billion over the first nine months of 2010.
Combining the two powerhouses would help decrease operating expenses and give Skype access to Facebook's advertising brains which would allow the combined operation to come up with new revenue streams to complement existing ones (for example pre and post roll adverts in calls and video calls).
Even if only one in every 16 users wanted to pay for the service, nothing would prevent Skype and Facebook from being as aggressive as Spotify by imposing quotas on VoIP usage; the theory being that once you've hooked your users, they are less willing to leave you and more likely to pay a fee.