Numerous reports have come out indicating that Google is getting ready to buy Israel-based navigation company Waze.
After hearing about Facebook getting ready to buy the company for close to a year, talks between those two companies reportedly fizzled out in recent weeks, as Google entered the conversation. Now, while still unconfirmed, this news appears to be the real deal.
The news was first reported by Israel’s Globes, which reported the deal could be for as much as $1.3 billion.
The New York Times also reports that the price is over $1 billion, and that the deal could be announced early this week. That report cites three people with knowledge of the discussions.
All Things D also has two sources “close to the situation” confirming the acquisition, with one indicating the announcement will come on Tuesday.
Apple has also been name-dropped as a potential suitor for Waze, but CEO Tim Cook recently indicated that it had made no offer to buy it. Such a deal could have been a bold competitive move for either Apple or Facebook against Google, which already has the very popular Google Maps and its accompanying navigation product, but Google’s purchase of Waze should help the company further distance itself from the competition.
Interestingly, Waze recently launched an update that added new Facebook integration.
Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference kicks off today, and iOS 7 is expected to be unveiled. Perhaps we’lll see some announcement regarding Apple’s much-ridiculed Maps product as part of that.