Peter Kafka at All Things Digital thinks that Steve Jobs might want to buy Facebook. His reasoning is that Jobs, when asked what Apple plans to do with its now $51 billion in cash, said, “We firmly believe that one or more unique strategic opportunities will present itself to us, and we’ll be in a position to take advantage of it.” Kafka believes that one such “unique strategic” opportunity is called Facebook.
Jobs and Facebook founder/CEO Mark Zuckerberg met for dinner the other day. Many presumed that they were discussing Facebook Connect and Ping integration, but what if it were something more, like Apple buying Facebook? Kafka thinks that Apple acquiring Facebook makes sense because Facebook doesn’t compete with Apple in any significant way, and Facebook is something that Apple couldn’t compete against even if it wanted to. Plus, Facebook is already competing with Google, “which has to make Jobs like it even more,” Kafka argues.
What would Apple buying Facebook lead to? Every Facebook user would probably automatically have an iTunes Store account. FaceTime chat could be integrated into Facebook chat, potentially leading to increased sales of iOS devices. If Apple continues down the road of using not only phone numbers, but email addresses and eventually Facebook IDs as designated FaceTime “phone numbers,” then 500 million users would already have a FaceTime ID to use when all telephony goes VoIP.
Apple has the cash to buy Facebook outright (Facebook is valued at around US $25-35 billion), but will they? Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg seem to share a lot of traits (not to mention both having had movies made about them), but could two of the most powerful people in tech — with equally powerful egos — work together?