Newsletters
News & Information for Technology Purchasers NewsFactor Sites:       NewsFactor.com     Enterprise Security Today     CRM Daily     Business Report     Sci-Tech Today  
   
This ad will display for the next 20 seconds. Click for more information, or
Home Enterprise I.T. Cloud Computing Applications Hardware More Topics...
Neustar, Inc.
Protect your website & network
using real-time information & analysis

www.neustar.biz
E-Commerce
Tame your scariest paperwork. Find Out How
Average Rating:
Rate this article:  
Facebook May Buy Crowdsourced Map Firm Waze for $1B
Facebook May Buy Crowdsourced Map Firm Waze for $1B

By Barry Levine
May 9, 2013 11:27AM

    Bookmark and Share
Analyst Avi Greengart questioned whether the mapping aspect of Waze would be that important to Facebook. It's "not clear Facebook needs to own maps applications," he said. Facebook might be interested in Waze's user base and technology, he said. There are "all kinds of interesting things you can do with crowdsourcing if you're a social network."
 



According to reports in the Israeli press, social networking giant Facebook is buying the Israel-based Waze for between $800 million and $1 billion. Waze provides a crowdsourced traffic and navigation app, with tens of millions of users around the globe.

The reports in several Israeli publications said a terms sheet has been signed and due diligence efforts are under way. Several months ago, Apple was reportedly trying to purchase Waze for about $400 million, but that pursuit fizzled out. To date, Waze has raised about $67 million in venture funding.

Waze says it has about 47 million users worldwide, more than twice what it reported last July. About one-third of its users are in the U.S., providing a base of support in the non-U.S. world that Facebook needs to continue its growth rate.

Where R&D?

Some observers have suggested the deal's closing may depend on where Waze's R&D facility will be located post-deal, since Waze's management wants to keep it in that country and Facebook customarily wants to move its purchases to its R&D facilities in the U.S. and the U.K.

Facebook's two previous Israeli acquisitions -- $70 million for phone interface developer Snaptu and $50 million to $60 million for facial recognition provider Face.com -- resulted in those companies moving to Facebook's facilities. Waze's U.S. offices and its CEO, Noam Bardin, are in Palo Alto, Calif.

Waze offers car routes, traffic information and mapping provided by its users, either automatically through location-based services or manually through user input. The information from the field can include speed of traveling on a given route, any impediments to traffic, like construction, or speed traps by law enforcement.

Waze also has an active mobile ad network. Growth possibilities include local ads and recommendations of attractions along a given route. Facebook has been looking to continue the growth of the mobile side of its business, which now has about 750 million monthly active users, an increase of more than 50 percent since the same time last years.

'Hard to Monetize'

Andrew Frank, research director at industry research firm Gartner, said that from an advertisers' point-of-view, the fact that the Waze service is crowdsourced doesn't provide an advantage over, say, canned content services, such as Google Maps.

"Advertisers still think in terms of targeted reach," he said, so the fact that users might have invested some of their time in providing information to the app means less to the advertiser than reaching a given audience segment.

Current Analysis' Avi Greengart questioned whether the navigation or mapping aspect of the purchase was that important to Facebook. It's "not clear Facebook needs to own maps applications," he said, unless it is planning to start its own mobile operating system.

Greengart noted that, depending on the mobile device, users can access map and navigation services from Google, Nokia, Apple or others, plus mapping services are "expensive to maintain, and hard to monetize."

He suggested that, in addition to the user base, Facebook might be interested in the technology. There are "all kinds of interesting things you can do with crowdsourcing if you're a social network," he pointed out.
 

Tell Us What You Think
Comment:

Name:



Neustar, Inc. (NYSE: NSR) is a trusted, neutral provider of real-time information and analysis to the Internet, telecommunications, information services, financial services, retail, media and advertising sectors. Neustar applies its advanced, secure technologies in location, identification, and evaluation to help its customers promote and protect their businesses. More information is available at www.neustar.biz.


 E-Commerce
1.   Amazon Launches E-Book Subscriptions
2.   NY Proposes Virtual Currency Rules
3.   Visa Intros Online Payment Service
4.   Facebook Testing Buy Button
5.   Strong PayPal Growth Boosts eBay


advertisement
NY Proposes Virtual Currency Rules
But are separate regulations warranted?
Average Rating:
E-Commerce Warehouse Demand Up
As online shopping continues to grow.
Average Rating:
Amazon Launches E-Book Subscriptions
Kindle Unlimited will run $9.99 a month.
Average Rating:


advertisement
Product Information and Resources for Technology You Can Use To Boost Your Business

Network Security Spotlight
Dropbox for Business Beefs Up Security
Dropbox is upping its game for business users. The cloud-based storage and sharing company has rolled out new security, search and other features to boost its appeal for businesses.
 
Wall Street Journal Hacked Again
Hacked again. That’s the story at the Wall Street Journal this week as the newspaper reports that the computer systems housing some of its news graphics were breached. Customers not affected -- yet.
 
New Web Tracking Technologies Defeat Privacy Protections
Recently developed Web tracking tools are able to circumvent even the best privacy defenses, according to a new study by researchers at Princeton and the University of Leuven in Belgium.
 

Enterprise Hardware Spotlight
Microsoft Makes Design Central to Its Future
Over the last four years, Microsoft has doubled the number of designers it employs, putting a priority on fashioning devices that work around people's lives -- and that are attractive and cool.
 
Contrary to Report, Lenovo's Staying in Small Windows Tablets
Device maker Lenovo has clarified a report that indicated it is getting out of the small Windows tablet business -- as in the ThinkPad 8 and the 8-inch Miix 2. But the firm said it is not exiting that market.
 
Seagate Unveils Networked Drives for Small Businesses
Seagate is out with five new networked attached storage products aimed at small businesses. The drives are for companies with up to 50 workers, and range in capacity from two to 20 terabytes.
 

Navigation
NewsFactor Network
Home/Top News | Enterprise I.T. | Cloud Computing | Applications | Hardware | Mobile Tech | Big Data | Communications
World Wide Web | Network Security | Data Storage | CRM Systems | Microsoft/Windows | Apple/Mac | Linux/Open Source | Personal Tech
Press Releases
NewsFactor Network Enterprise I.T. Sites
NewsFactor Technology News | Enterprise Security Today | CRM Daily

NewsFactor Business and Innovation Sites
Sci-Tech Today | NewsFactor Business Report

NewsFactor Services
FreeNewsFeed | Free Newsletters

About NewsFactor Network | How To Contact Us | Article Reprints | Careers @ NewsFactor | Services for PR Pros | Top Tech Wire | How To Advertise

Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
© Copyright 2000-2014 NewsFactor Network. All rights reserved. Article rating technology by Blogowogo. Member of Accuserve Ad Network.