Many people communicate with friends and family around the world using the service offered by Skype. Now today we are getting reports that Microsoft has snapped up Skype for $8.5 billion, a deal which has shocked many analysts.
Charles Arthur of guardian.co.uk is reporting that the deal is thought to be an overpayment by Microsoft for the internet phone provider. The deal is thought to be officially confirmed today, and would be Microsoft’s biggest purchase of another company since it paid $6 billion for aQuantive in 2007.
It is also believed that Microsoft will integrate the service into products such as the Xbox 360 and Kinect systems, and it could even find its way to the company’s Office product. Rumors have been going for a while that Skype could be taken over by another company, with Facebook and Google mentioned.
Some people have thought the idea of Microsoft taking over Skype a good one, but have questioned the price that is reportedly being paid. Skype was purchased by eBay back in 2005 for $2.6billion, but sold off 70% back in 2007. But if the price of the new deal is correct eBay should be getting around $2.4billion.
Skype has reported debts of $686 million which Microsoft will take over as part of the deal. The service has around 663 million users but most of its service’s are free.