The online world is abuzz with speculation that Internet giant Google is in talks to buy the messaging application ‘WhatsApp’ for $1 billion (Rs 5,500 crore).
“While the deal started four or five weeks ago, we’ve been told that WhatsApp is ‘playing hardball’ and jockeying for a higher acquisition price, which currently is close to $1 billion right now,” tech website Digital Trends said.
Google executives did not respond to the news.
Reports say, Google was in talks to acquire WhatsApp in December last year as well but the two companies parted ways without signing on the dotted line.
In December last year, there was speculation that Facebook was in talks to acquire WhatsApp. However, Facebook denied the news as rumour.
WhatsApp Messenger is a cross-platform mobile messaging app that allows exchange of messages without having to pay any charge. WhatsApp is available for iPhone, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, Android and Nokia. This is the most popular messaging service across the world, after BlackBerry’s BBM messenger service.
It is being touted that 17 billion messages (7 billion inbound and 10 billion outbound) are transmitted daily through WhatsApp. The free app has been downloaded by over 100 million Android users alone since its debut.