A couple weeks ago, reports came out that Facebook was getting ready to buy mapping/traffic app Waze for up to $1 billion. This was actually an extension of rumors that have been going on for quite some time, dating back to at least last summer.
It appears that there might be a bidding war, with an Internet giant better known for maps in on it. According to Bloomberg, Google is in the mix too, as are other unnamed companies. The news outlet’s sources indicate that Facebook’s talks with the company being publicly reported has led to interest from others, including the search giant.
It will be interesting to see how this plays out, as Google could be an attractive destination for a company in the mapping area, given the success of Google Maps, and the continued expansion of imagery and features. On the other hands, a company like Facebook could provide more freedom for a company like Waze as it doesn’t already have a major maps product.
From Facebook’s perspective, the acquisition would be an opportunity to capture more mobile users, not unlike its deal with Instagram. From Google’s perspective, such an acquisition could be more of a defensive strategy than anything.
Google unveiled new Maps experiences for desktop, mobile and tablet devices at Google I/O last week.