Microsoft (still) in talks to buy TikTok, aims to close the deal by September

onetheycallEric

Posts: 209   +31
Staff member
The big picture: As the geopolitical pressure ratchets up on TikTok and its parent company ByteDance, there's talks of President Trump moving to force ByteDance to divest itself of the popular social app. More interestingly, Microsoft is reportedly kicking the tires on buying it from ByteDance. The Redmond software giant doesn't have a major presence in social media outside of the professional network LinkedIn. TikTok could give it one.

Update (Aug 2): It's been a busy weekend with back and forths of what the future of TikTok will look like, if any, in the United States. The rumor of Microsoft taking over the social app has now been confirmed by the software giant, who has made an official statement saying that following a conversation between CEO Satya Nadella and President Trump, Microsoft plans to continue discussions to purchase TikTok.

The company's intent is to move swiftly to complete acquisition discussions with ByteDance by mid September, while remaining in communication with the U.S. government and make the takeover subject to a complete security review.

Microsoft has clarified that the preliminary proposal involves a purchase of TikTok in the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Under the new structure, Microsoft is proposing to add a layer of "world-class security, privacy, and digital safety protections." to ensure transparency to users and security oversight by governments in these countries.

Multiple sources suggested late Friday that Microsoft was in talks to buy TikTok, the popular video app owned by Chinese tech company ByteDance. A potential acquisition from Microsoft seemed to stem from reports that President Trump would order ByteDance to sell its US operations.

TikTok evolved from ByteDance's Douyin app which was primarily aimed at the Chinese market, before merging with the app musical.ly which brought TikTok to a worldwide audience. Since then the app has exploded in popularity and has subsequently attracted the ireful gaze of US lawmakers and regulators.

As TikTok has risen in popularity, the app has been increasingly put under the microscope over concerns for privacy and national security. Regarding privacy, the app has already been caught copying iOS' clipboard contents, and Reddit CEO Steve Huffman criticized the app, calling it "fundamentally parasitic." TikTok also has a history of controversial data collection practices.

TikTok has also been caught in the middle of the back and forth between the US and China, and over the alleged ties that ByteDance has to the Chinese government. TikTok scrapes a shocking amount of data on its users, and under the China Internet Security Law, ByteDance would have to surrender that data if the Chinese government requested it. However, TikTok maintains that its servers aren't based in China, and as such, aren't subject to such laws.

TikTok is under review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), and there are rumors that ByteDance could be added to the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) Entity List. That's the same list that Huawei found itself on, and would mean ByteDance would be cut off from American IP and technology.

Microsoft acquiring TikTok would likely go a long way in alleviating western fears of privacy and national security. ByteDance has made its own attempts at lessening these concerns, including appointing former Disney executive, Kevin Mayer, as its CEO and even floating the idea of American investment companies buying back the company from ByteDance.

Given its sheer popularity, especially with young crowds, TikTok is likely to continue in a controversial spotlight unless something big happens. TikTok has been banned by the Navy, Army, and the TSA. Joe Biden's presidential campaign staff was recently forbidden from using the app on work and personal devices, and the list could go on and on.

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summermick

Posts: 39   +45
Does anyone remember vine? Tiktok is just another vine with a live stream feature. It's probably going to end like vine once Microsh!t buys it.
 
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Nobonita Barua

Posts: 52   +50
That would the end of TikTok. Byte dance shouldn't sell TikTok ,instead focus on other markets.
And for US, I think every other country has understood what doing business with them means. So my suggestion would be to avoid US market altogether. Even if it is going to be hard today, it will be good for future.
 

Mister_K

Posts: 1,946   +627
Conspiracy time.

I wonder if its the fear of it being a Chinese company so the US Government is supporting this acquisition for "protection".

I still don't understand why Microsoft would not try and purchase ARM. Much more logical.
 

MaxSmarties

Posts: 371   +195
Conspiracy time.

I wonder if its the fear of it being a Chinese company so the US Government is supporting this acquisition for "protection".

I still don't understand why Microsoft would not try and purchase ARM. Much more logical.
ARM could be bought by NVidia according to last rumors
 

Xclusiveitalian

Posts: 820   +204
Basically all the information TikTok steals from it's users won't be given to China anymore, instead, it will go to the USA.
 

treetops

Posts: 3,008   +758
In a sense it does seem like one of those old survey scams. Feb 3rd birthday people be like "duh nuh nuh nuh". oh you liked that vid did ya, check mark. Not that the same info is not directly inserted into FB or any other app. It's probably fun seeing what you can get away with, without having your aunt etc spying on you.
 

mbrowne5061

Posts: 1,599   +905
That would the end of TikTok. Byte dance shouldn't sell TikTok ,instead focus on other markets.
And for US, I think every other country has understood what doing business with them means. So my suggestion would be to avoid US market altogether. Even if it is going to be hard today, it will be good for future.
Banned in India and soon-to-be the US. What other markets are your proposing?
 

emmzo

Posts: 203   +101
A MS acquisition will save Trump some diplomatic headaches and you know for sure from their track record, they will bury it for good.
 

mbrowne5061

Posts: 1,599   +905
Latin, Africa, Other of Asia. EU, US & India isn't "market". Those are simply cash cows. Use it as long as it is possible.
The US has states with GDPs larger than some of the countries in these regions, combined.

Losing access to India locked them out of the 5th largest market in the world, and one of the fastest growing. Losing access to the US would lock them out of the largest market. And how would they make money in these other markets? They sell ads, which require healthy consumerism to be valuable.
 

Nobonita Barua

Posts: 52   +50
The US has states with GDPs larger than some of the countries in these regions, combined.

Losing access to India locked them out of the 5th largest market in the world, and one of the fastest growing. Losing access to the US would lock them out of the largest market. And how would they make money in these other markets? They sell ads, which require healthy consumerism to be valuable.
lol, disconnected from Reality.

How did US became world's biggest consumer market? By printing paper money. Once that's gone, US will be history with it too.

China is biggest consumer market with real values & real consumers. It's companies can survive on it's own. US, India is irrelevant in case of China, if any other country would be there in place of China , your comment would have been appropriate.

India is basically slum. They barely have 3G. I would like to see some evidence that supports the myth of anything fastest regarding india.
China has potential market of Africa, MENA, Latin & other countries in Asia.