Over the weekend, a report from Variety suggested that Google was in the final stages to announce plans to buy video game streaming service Twitch for roughly $1 billion. A separate report from the Wall Street Journal, who must have much different sources, claims that the deal is still early, and that Twitch may decline whatever offer is made, opting for additional funding instead of selling off the company to Google.
For those not familiar with Twitch, it is a streaming website service that launched in 2011, but has grown exponentially. It single-handedly accounted for 1.35% of all downstream bandwidth usage in March of 2014. As big as YouTube has become at video sharing, they never seemed to get their finger on streaming, and that is where they hope Twitch can help.
The reported all-cash deal is expected to be announced sooner, rather than later, according to Variety. However, YouTube and Twitch are reportedly preparing to fight for the deal, as they expect US regulators will have something to say about the #1 video content site acquiring the #1 video streaming site. From the WSJ sources, who paint a much different picture, the public may never learn the actual value of the deal, and a lot of talks must be completed before anything official is announced. No YouTube or Twitch representatives have commented on the deal.
Only time will tell if this deal will benefit the consumers to all of this online content. Twitch has a fairly well-established monetization strategy with their channels, and we can only assume Google won’t mess with that.
What do you think? If Google does end up purchasing Twitch, is this good or bad for the young company?