TechCrunch is reporting that Google is in the late stages of negotiations to buy Twitter for well north of its $250m valuation.
Wow, it seems anything that’s successful on the web is a target acquisition for Google.
But why would Google want Twitter. I agree with Michael Arrington and his belief that Twitter’s value is as a real-time search engine:
Why would Google want Twitter? We’ve been arguing for some time that Twitter’s real value is in search. It holds the keys to the best real time database and search engine on the Internet, and Google doesn’t even have a horse in the game.
In a post last month called It’s Time To Start Thinking Of Twitter As A Search Engine, I wrote: More and more people are starting to use Twitter to talk about brands in real time as they interact with them. And those brands want to know all about it, whether to respond individually (The W Hotel pestered me until I told them to just leave me alone), or simply gather the information to see what they’re doing right and what they’re doing wrong.
And all of it is discoverable at search.twitter.com, the search engine that Twitter acquired last summer.
People searching for news. Brands searching for feedback. That’s valuable stuff.
It would be sad to see Twitter become a part of the Google stable already, so we’ll see how this rumour pans out.
What we really need is competition, at the moment Google seems to have its own way at the over-riding superbrand at the search table. Microsoft seems to have left the party and its not good to have a one horse race.