Microsoft in Talks to Acquire TikTok

Multiple reports claim that Microsoft is seriously considering acquiring TikTok, the controversial social networking platform.

Fox Business, Bloomberg and The New York Times have all independently reported that the software giant is in talks to acquire TikTok. The talks come as the U.S. presidential administration weighs banning the app in the United States unless the Chinese-owned firm’s U.S. assets are sold to a U.S.-based company.

TikTok, for those unfamiliar, is a social-networking service owned by ByteDance, a Beijing-based internet technology company. It specializes in short-form, user-created videos. Or, as the Trump administration claims, is a national security threat. Somehow.

Microsoft has declined to comment on this story. But I think we can all agree it would be a horrible fit for this consumer service, even if the deal somehow passed regulatory muster.

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Conversation 44 comments

  • mebby

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 4:36 pm

    <p>Why? </p><p><br></p><p>…are they trying to acquire a social networking platform?</p>

  • anoldamigauser

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 4:42 pm

    <p>Does TikTok make money? Can Microsoft justify the price for that revenue stream going forward?</p><p>If not, it is a bad fit. If it does, then they can take a hands off approach and add another revenue stream.</p><p>How many TikTok users know or care who owns it?</p>

  • reefer

    31 July, 2020 - 4:45 pm

    <p>Omg, no Microsoft… no. You are not a hip company and to aquire teen app fav TikTok will kill it.</p>

    • simard57

      31 July, 2020 - 5:22 pm

      <blockquote><em><a href="#558183">In reply to reefer:</a></em></blockquote><p>they did right by Minecraft!</p>

  • ibmthink

    31 July, 2020 - 4:47 pm

    <p>Also a good way to kill it off.</p>

  • rmlounsbury

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 4:49 pm

    <p>This doesn't make any actual sense at all to me. I'm trying to think of how the technology could be integrated into the MS portfolio but I'm not complete understanding where it would fit. </p><p><br></p><p>I also don't entirely understand why Microsoft would want to get involved with this hot mess either. </p><p><br></p><p>….Unless….</p><p><br></p><p>…Hey kids, do you want to TikTok in the US? You'll just need to buy a Surface Duo which exclusively has TikTok. </p><p><br></p><p>Yeah, that must be it. </p>

  • beckoningeagle

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 5:16 pm

    <p>This is the best news I've heard all day. My daughter might stop using it now.</p>

  • simard57

    31 July, 2020 - 5:18 pm

    <p>How is this consistent with their Enterprise focus?</p><p><br></p><p><br></p>

  • cavalier_eternal

    31 July, 2020 - 5:42 pm

    <p>After buying TikTok they can bring back the Kin and have it just boot directly into the App. Maybe include a PlaysForSure music player that is only accessible via Cortana. It will be like a greatest hits of "what were they thinking?" </p>

    • bluvg

      31 July, 2020 - 6:03 pm

      <blockquote><em><a href="#558195">In reply to cavalier_eternal:</a></em></blockquote><p>Kin! Ha! </p>

  • SocialDanny123

    31 July, 2020 - 5:55 pm

    <p>There is definitely potential in the advertising and sharing space. I can imagine that Tiktok will expand beyond music videos and it allows Xbox players to share 13 seconds videos of games. </p>

  • bluvg

    31 July, 2020 - 6:05 pm

    <p>Um, what? Microsoft, c'mon, you know better. You have a very checkered past with this type of thing. Unless you're buying it to kill it? Maybe this is part of the JEDI contract? </p>

  • olditpro2000

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 6:10 pm

    <p>….why would they even be considering this? For some bizarre Xbox integration?</p>

  • lvthunder

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 6:18 pm

    <p>Didn't people say this type of thing when Google bought YouTube? They might be buying it to keep it out of others hands.</p>

  • jhambi

    31 July, 2020 - 6:18 pm

    <p>GitHub + TikTok = TikHub?</p>

  • mattbg

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 6:19 pm

    <p>Extremely strange, and would put them into direct competition with Facebook.</p>

    • IanYates82

      Premium Member
      31 July, 2020 - 8:17 pm

      <blockquote><em><a href="#558229">In reply to mattbg:</a></em></blockquote><p>I recall years ago that Microsoft was an early investor in facebook, back around early windows phone times. </p><p><br></p>

  • brettscoast

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 6:35 pm

    <p>I can't see any conditions under which this deal could come to fruition. Microsoft shouldn't touch this with a 40 foot pole.</p>

  • AKAJoelReed

    31 July, 2020 - 7:25 pm

    <p>I admit this is crazy. But I wonder if this could be a integration with Xbox. I could see a integration where when you press the share button on your Series X controller it uploads you 30 second game clip to TikTok. </p>

  • JerryH

    Premium Member
    31 July, 2020 - 8:43 pm

    <p>OK, so like others I can't find any reason for Microsoft to even consider this. What, they need this Vine clone to add short video's to LinkedIn?</p>

  • BigM72

    31 July, 2020 - 10:29 pm

    <p>It doesn’t make sense. TikTok is flavour of the year but does it have staying power? If Facebook doesn’t buy it, they will kill it by integrating features elsewhere just like they did competing with snapchat.</p>

  • PhilipVasta

    31 July, 2020 - 11:20 pm

    <p>I'm tempted to joke about this, but seriously, what would the goal be?</p>

  • codymesh

    01 August, 2020 - 12:06 am

    <p>why would Microsoft be interested in this what-so-ever?</p>

    • ghostrider

      01 August, 2020 - 9:31 am

      <blockquote><em><a href="#558321">In reply to codymesh:</a></em></blockquote><p>It's trendy at the moment, and MS are still desperate to be seen as <em>cool </em>with the teens. If they buy it, and that's a big IF (Trump permitting), they'll no doubt re-brand it, botch it, and it will be dead in 12 months (think <em>Mixer </em>here).</p>

  • peter_froslev_christensen

    01 August, 2020 - 12:40 am

    <p>Microsoft Teens</p>

  • christian.hvid

    01 August, 2020 - 2:33 am

    <p>Contrary to popular opinion, I think this makes a ton of sense. Microsoft hasn't had a hit in social media since MSN Messenger, and that was over 20 years ago. This is one of the reasons why their brand is completely fading away in the minds of young people. </p><p><br></p><p>Buying TikTok may not be cheap, and it may not have any relevance to Microsoft's core business. But it will give Microsoft an opportunity to show their logotype to teenagers a billion times per day. That alone justifies the acquisition, even if TikTok itself is a fad.</p><p><br></p><p>What I don't get is the part about selling off the U.S. assets (presumably meaning the U.S. subsidiary). Does this mean there would be a Microsoft TikTok for American users and a ByteDance TikTok for everybody else? And if so, could they even be integrated with each other, given the alleged security concerns? </p>

    • jensengregory

      Premium Member
      01 August, 2020 - 9:38 am

      <blockquote><em><a href="#558336">In reply to christian.hvid:</a></em></blockquote><p><br></p><p>From my understanding, TikTok would be spun off into a US company completely separate from Chinese affiliation. I doubt they'd remain integrated in any way. </p>

  • Lyndon

    01 August, 2020 - 2:57 am

    <p>Trump doesn't want that to happen. The whole reason Trump is trying to ban TikTok is because he's angry some tiktok users punked him with fake rally registrations. His reason for banning TikTok is vindictiveness, so allowing Microsoft to aquire it doesn't facilitate this.</p>

  • digiguy

    Premium Member
    01 August, 2020 - 6:44 am

    <p>these childish vertical videos are cancer…. hope the acquisition will make them fade away…</p>

  • karlinhigh

    Premium Member
    01 August, 2020 - 10:02 am

    <p><em style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">a national security threat. Somehow.</em></p><p><br></p><p><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">That's the same conclusion India has come to, they banned the service. All I know on this is what Ben Thompson tells me.</span></p><p><br></p><p><span class="ql-cursor"></span></p>

    • txag

      02 August, 2020 - 2:43 pm

      <blockquote><a href="#558389"><em>In reply to karlinhigh</em></a></blockquote><blockquote><br></blockquote><p>Thompson's article is excellent. Thanks for the link.</p>

  • waethorn

    01 August, 2020 - 2:45 pm

    <p>Maybe Intel should buy them….</p>

  • brduffy

    01 August, 2020 - 4:40 pm

    <p>To be fair, Donald Trump is not the only one concerned about TikTok. Joe Bidens campaign banned it from their staffers and other countries are considering banning it as well.</p>

    • Lyndon

      01 August, 2020 - 7:16 pm

      <blockquote><em><a href="#558424">In reply to brduffy:</a></em></blockquote><p>Have you ever used tiktok? There is very little to be concerned about national security wise in regards to content. Unless they're using it to hack your phone somehow, which I doubt they're managing to hack my iphone. There is not much in the way of easily harvestable information. You can maybe determine people like to watch short 15 seconds or less videos of people dancing or other silly, comedic, informative videos?</p>

      • brduffy

        01 August, 2020 - 10:32 pm

        <blockquote><a href="#558447"><em>In reply to Lyndon:</em></a><em> One of the problems discovered with TikTok is that they were not disclosing the fact that they were accessing the contents of people's clipboard. That issue may have been resolved but its certainly more concerning than viewing some silly videos. I don't deny that banning it is a political move, but its not a move being taken exclusively by the Trump administration and given the outrage so many people felt about the election interference of 2016 I find it funny that they are concerned about banning a potential security risk as both the Trump administration and the Biden campaign have chosen to do.</em></blockquote><p><br></p>

      • Stooks

        02 August, 2020 - 10:20 am

        <blockquote><em><a href="#558447">In reply to Lyndon:</a></em></blockquote><p>Lol. How about your location, you contacts, your clipboard, your DNS requests etc, etc, etc. </p><p><br></p><p>The problem with the iPhone is that it is so locked down that hacks in the past were not discovered because security people can't figure out until like in the case of Whatsapp, people paid a price.</p>

  • jupast

    01 August, 2020 - 6:18 pm

    <p>So they pass or are too slow on things they probably wish they had acquired (Twitch, Whatsapp etc) and they're actually interested in this flash in the pan fad?</p>

  • ponsaelius

    01 August, 2020 - 7:29 pm

    <p>Looking forward to it's integration into Teams. </p>

    • noelt1955

      Premium Member
      02 August, 2020 - 3:29 am

      <blockquote><em><a href="#558448">In reply to ponsaelius:</a></em></blockquote><p>And I suggest they change its name to Outlook. </p>

  • madthinus

    Premium Member
    02 August, 2020 - 10:37 am

    <p>Remember the outrage when countries like Russia demanded that data be stored in Russia. Well hello mr Pot. </p>

  • ben55124

    Premium Member
    02 August, 2020 - 12:32 pm

    <p>Tictok featuring mixer integration. Synergy! /s</p>

  • waethorn

    02 August, 2020 - 4:41 pm

    <p>Smartphones and mobile apps are a security nightmare.</p>

  • waethorn

    02 August, 2020 - 4:48 pm

    <p>If the government won't shut down Zoom, they won't shut down TikTok either.</p>

    • Paul Thurrott

      Premium Member
      03 August, 2020 - 7:18 am

      The government was literally poised to shut down Tik Tok on Saturday.

      If you’re looking for common sense and logic, you’ll have to find a different government.


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