After rejecting Microsoft’s bid, ByteDance announced that it will partner with Oracle for TikTok’s U.S. operations. But it’s not clear exactly what that means: Will Oracle become the majority owner of TikTok’s U.S. operations? Or are the firms simply partnering to move TikTok to Oracle’s cloud servers?
We won’t find any answers from Oracle: The firm has yet to even acknowledge that a deal was made.
What is clear is why ByteDance turned down Microsoft: The software giant wanted to move TikTok’s source code to its U.S.-based Azure servers, including its core algorithms. But when China stepped in recently by refusing to export dual-use technologies, including those algorithms, outside of the country, Microsoft’s role was effectively ended. Oracle, meanwhile, was open to a much more limited partnership.
Anyway, from my perspective, this was a bullet dodged for Microsoft. And a big unknown for Oracle, about which I don’t care in the slightest.