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Friday, February 21, 2014

Please don't buy us!

A trend I have noticed recently in news headlines is some super huge company bought another pretty big, seemingly random company for 10 quadrillion dollars. Have you noticed it? So far recent ones were Google buying Nest (home automation based company), Comcast buying Time Warner Cable, Facebook buying Whatsapp, a practically free texting app. Google even somewhat silently bought another company today. Get it? All these major companies like to buy each other to build their value and reach. Thats what they claim anyways.

First on the stand is the all-mighty Google. I swear they have bought everything! Google has bought or "merged" with an estimated 145 companies since 2001. They even snuck one by most people today with a company called with a purpose of anti ad fraud. Some key acquisitions of Google over the years were DeepMind Technologies, Nest, Waze, Behavio, Incentive Targeting, Milk Inc., and Zagat. There are plenty more but the list was already getting long. Google has done a great deal of building both a very productive and very protective layer. I've once heard that Google can do everything. Everything? I read a recent joke referring to the purchase of Nest: If your house catches fire, you will start getting gmail ads for fire extinguishers. I wonder if Google has bought a company that can make sure there is never a Googlepocalypse. If every Google service crashed, the majority of internet connected users would be lost. Are you one of them? I know I am. This blog is hosted through Google.

Another recent development of Google is a project codenamed Google X. This is actually an entirely separate operation of the "normal" Google. Google X has purchased at least 12 companies to contribute to them taking over the world and building Skynet. Actually they are working strenuously on AI or artificial intelligence, robots, contacts that alert you when your blood sugar is low, and that weird bar Link wore on Star Trek. Many things are public knowledge and many more things are unheard-of. They are even working hard to develop driverless cars. Ladies, you may proceed to apply make-up on the way to the office.

Facebook, oh Facebook. Those guys just won't stop. Whats up with WhatsApp? There is a lot of speculation over the motivation behind this purchase, buts the reason is obvious. No one knows. It's a $19 Billion question. A comment from Mark Zuckerburg indicates that Facebook is interested in the apps reach to international areas that paying for a text service is very costly. The app currently charges 99 cents a year for unlimited text messages. Other iconic buys for Facebook: Instagram,,, and Snaptu. Facebook has a fairly good record for grabbing the good companies and then making more money off of them, but they have had a good share of flops too. Facebook has to maintain stance on changing social media. Just as everything else, they go through phases. If they just stayed like they started, they would have been another Myspace. (Thank you Facebook) Sometimes I get the feeling that these big companies just compete at who gets more buys.

The moral of the story: Save your money up so you can buy big companies too. Actually I really feel like the true moral is that we need more control over this fiasco. So many big companies eat up the small ones getting closer every day to becoming another monopoly.

All Content Copyright 2014 -Rodney Conner, The REAL Tech Spot