We reported a few days back regarding the possibility of the VoIP service, Skype being acquired by either Facebook or Google. While that rumor was still blazing across the Web new rumors add up, with the latest hinting at Microsoft being a very strong contender in the race to acquire Skype.
The rumors put Skype’s acquisition by Facebook to be valued between $3 to $4 Billion, and those were just off the mill numbers with expectations of Skype fetching more. The acquisition would have more or less would have put Skype and Facebook working together in a joint venture, but that’s past.
The Wall Street Journal has humongous figure that Microsoft is offering to bait Skype and is close to the $7 billion mark. Talk about Skype turning into a hot entity with eyes of all major players set on its acquisition, which makes the huge offering a little less surprising. The talks between the two had been happening since Monday, though nothing has been officially said about this by either Microsoft or Skype itself.
The acquisition of Skype by Microsoft can play a major role at transforming Microsoft’s efforts to build up its mobile phone market which is dwarfed by both Apple and Google. But it will have to be seen as to what weight these rumors carry, we are on the watch out for any update that we receive on this news.
Update: According to All Things Digital’s Kara Swisher, the deal has already been done and Microsoft will announce it in the afternoon EET (before markets open in the US is our guess, if this is indeed true).
Update 10.53 EET: GigaOM has confirmation on the deal:
Updated at 12 midnight: Microsoft has bought Skype for $8.5 billion, in an all cash deal. The deal closed a few hours ago.