Facebook is reportedly in “advanced talks” to acquire popular navigation start up Waze in a deal that could reach $1 billion. According to Calcalist, a business daily, talks had already begun six months ago, with due diligence now being conducted. If confirmed, the purchase of Waze, a mobile navigation app that crowdsources traffic information, will mark yet another significant purchase from Facebook, who recently bought Instagram for a similar $1 billion – which caused quite a furore over the tweaked Terms of Service on Instagram shortly after the acquisition.
This rumoured acquisition is a rather interesting one, as both Facebook and Waze do not share common interests beyond the social element – which already brought about a Facebook login integration on the app that allows users to see where their Facebook friends are on Waze. On the other hand, with the Facebook Home project in mind and the HTC First Facebook smartphone as a precursor, Facebook may be planning something exceptionally big in the mobile industry, which would feature an all-encompassing social smartphone spearheaded by Facebook, Instagram and Waze.
However, it is still early days and we’re merely speculating. It is worth mentioning, however, that when contacted by Reuters, Waze declined to comment on the rumoured acquisition – which more often than not speaks far more than the standard PR reply.