There’s been a lot of buzz lately surrounding Apple and Twitter. Reports began surfacing last week that Apple was actively considering (or may have considered) making a substantial investment in Twitter – which makes sense, considering Twitter’s integration into iOS (and now OS X as well).
The New York Times reported that Apple and Twitter had been discussing an investment of hundreds of millions of dollars “in recent months,” although it was unclear whether or not they would come to any sort of agreement.
Apple has considered an investment in the hundreds of millions of dollars, one that could value Twitter at more than $10 billion, up from an $8.4 billion valuation last year, these people said. They declined to be named because the discussions were private.
A few hours later, The Wall Street Journal posted a response, stating that those discussions had taken place over a year ago. Today, WSJ has published a new report attempting to set the record straight, stating that the two companies are actually focusing how to more deeply integrate Twitter into both iOS and OS X, and that they are currently working on adding deep Twitter integration into iTunes.
Apple and Twitter remain tight and continue to talk about future product integrations. They include more deeply melding Twitter and iTunes, according to two people briefed on the matter. Apple is preparing to phase out its own troubled social network for iTunes, called Ping, later this year. iTunes users can currently link their Twitter and Ping accounts together to do things like find people they follow on Twitter on Ping.
Considering the level of integration Twitter already has in Apple’s ecosystem, integrating Twitter into iTunes makes a lot of sense. It would help people more easily share songs, apps, and other iTunes content, and would help ditch their failed Ping network, and turn iTunes into a more social experience.
If Apple is continuing to work with Twitter on iTunes integration, a substantial investment would still make sense for Apple – after all, they’ve got a lot banking on Twitter at the moment, and tossing some cash into the equation could only help.
The full truth about Apple’s plans to invest in Twitter remain unclear – but it would make a lot of sense, and frankly, I wouldn’t be at all surprised.