Yesterday, Twitter announced that it was incorporating search and trends features into its home page - a move that allows users to dig deeper into the real-time conversations occurring in the Twittersphere. There's valuable information there - as people chime in on current events, natural disasters, or even American Idol performances in real-time.
Who better to want to tap into that vast database of real-people, real-time conversations than the search giant itself: Google.
Techcrunch, citing two unnamed sources, posted a rumor late Thursday that Google was in the 'late-stages" of talks to acquire Twitter. Later, that post cited a third source who said that the discussions are at the early stage.
A rumor is a rumor so you have to take it for what it's worth. Still, the idea isn't all that crazy. Twitter has growing membership base of people who are using the microblogging service for a variety of reasons, including a replacement to RSS feeds. Those different usage models are what's making Twitter that much more valuable today. That's made it valuable - both as a platform and as an aggregator of content.
If, in fact, Twitter is in acquisiton talks with Google or anyone else, it may be in a position to play hard-to-get - and should. As much as an acquisition like this might make sense in some respects, the timing is wrong. Twitter is just now starting to hit the mainstream and really hasn't found its groove just yet. The growth we're seeing today may look like small potatoes to the growth that could come tomorrow. And the usage trends, as well as new business models, are just starting to be realized, as well
Twitter has already once rejected an acquisition bid from Facebook, largely because it was based on an over-valuation of Facebook. At the time, that was the right call. I think it still is.
The update to the Techcrunch post also notes that the companies may work together on a real time search engine.
That would be better.