Who Do You Think Apple Should Buy?

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by Cleverboy, Oct 20, 2007.


Who do you think Apple should buy?

  1. El Gato (maker of the EyeTV DVR solution)

    14 vote(s)
  2. TiVo (maker of the industry defining DVR player, and patent holder)

    7 vote(s)
  3. Nintendo (maker of the rocketship wii gaming platform)

    9 vote(s)
  4. Palm (maker of the Treo, rapidly declining industry player)

    0 vote(s)
  5. Adobe (maker of Photoshop and Flash)

    13 vote(s)
  6. CD Baby (popular inde music distributor)

    0 vote(s)
  7. Cafe Press (popular print on demand business)

    1 vote(s)
  8. Other...

    7 vote(s)
  1. Cleverboy macrumors 65816


    May 25, 2007
    Pocket Universe, nth Dimensional Complex Manifold
    Okay, here's the deal... Apple's got MAD money on hand. They've been estimated to be holding nearly 14 billion dollar in cash, and the stack is only getting bigger. Meanwhile, a number of HUGE reality shifting changes have taken place over the last 5 years. Apple has a new phone product. Apple has a fledgling media center product. Apple has a sub $500 computer. Apple now owns the Apple trademark completely (Beatles label row is over). iTunes is one of the popular pieces of media convergence software on any computer, Mac or PC. Apple laptops are selling like never before, catapulting Apple to an above 8% marketshare in the U.S. personal computer space.

    If anything, Apple is all about convergence. Apple has been purchasing a number of small companies/technologies, like Fingerworks or CUPs. They've acquired a bevvy of tools, like Shake and Logic. Even iTunes itself began as the software program acquisition of SoundJam. Is the next quantum leap to be made by a big name purchase? Give your pluses and minuses.

    If you had to pick ONE, who do you think Apple should buy?

    • El Gato (maker of the EyeTV DVR solution)
    • TiVo (maker of the industry defining DVR player, and patent holder)
    • Nintendo (maker of the rocketship wii gaming platform)
    • Palm (maker of the Treo, rapidly declining industry player)
    • Adobe (maker of Photoshop and Flash)
    • CD Baby (popular inde music distributor)
    • Cafe Press (popular print on demand business)
    • Other...

    What purchase would excite you more about Apple's future and why?

    ~ CB
  2. miniConvert macrumors 68040


    Mar 4, 2006
    Kent, UK - the 'Garden of England'.
    If I had to pick one it'd be El Gato. I think it's time that Apple shipped Macs with fully integrated TV tuner capabilities and fully implemented them in Front Row.

    I don't think it needs to buy the other companies. It's pretty innovative on its own, and it's important companies like Adobe remain independent and cross-platform if the likes of Microsoft Silverlight are to be kept at bay (shudder).
  3. Nugget macrumors 68000


    Nov 24, 2002
    Houston Texas USA
    I couldn't care less about El Gato's stuff. The future is HD and TV tuner technology just isn't going to get you there. Cablecard is the real win, but Cablecard deployment and industry support is too spotty and unreliable for Apple (or anyone really) to make much use of yet. If anyone is positioned to well for the industry's shift to HD it's TiVo, but I can't really see Apple gaining much by buying TiVo either. TiVo has really stagnated on the software side and as much as I love mine (ancient T-60 and a slightly less ancient DirecTiVo HD) there's nothing in there that Apple couldn't replicate if they put their mind to it.

    The rest of your options make even less sense to me. I just don't see the benefit to Apple.
  4. Chaszmyr macrumors 601


    Aug 9, 2002
    Adobe would be my first choice from that list, but Apple really couldn't afford to buy Adobe (which is worth $26.5b). It'd certainly be interesting if Apple bought Nintendo, but I'm not sure it'd actually be good for either company, and Apple couldn't even almost afford to buy Nintendo (which is worth about $55b).
  5. Sherman Homan macrumors 6502

    Oct 27, 2006
    I'm not sure Apple should be buying established companies. Throwing some dough into establishing better coordination with the Old Guard like Adobe, Palm and Nintendo would help. And seeding new innovations with startups.
  6. Cleverboy thread starter macrumors 65816


    May 25, 2007
    Pocket Universe, nth Dimensional Complex Manifold
    Well, the bigger the company, more it would inevitably involve stock, right? I'm not even clear if that changes anything though.

    AAPL: Market Cap - 148.20B
    ADBE: Market Cap - 26.55B

    I'm never sure why Cringley became much of a pundit. I always find his speculations somewhat on the wild side, but they're not without some thoughtful observations baked in:

    For Apple's Windows Strategy to Work,
    It Must Replace Microsoft Office and Buy Adobe Systems

    April 27, 2006

    They secured Microsoft Office on the platform for a while. They began supporting open document formats, while Office was delayed, and they are cultivating a viable replacement (even if not quite there with Excel). An Adobe acquisition/merge a la the Adobe acquisition/merger of Macromedia, would be a huge win for Apple and a gigantic "Whoa" to the professional industries of print, video production and web design. More than anything, this whole Mac vs. PC debate would become something of a battle of titans, instead of a David vs. Goliath... with Microsoft working hard to release a successful Photoshop type product. Personally, I couldn't tell if the Adobe/Macromedia merger was "good" for the industry, but aside from the marginalization of Director and a small number of other redundancies... it's been kind of interesting.
    I agree. Apple generally plays acquisitions very close to vest, and not where brand recognition is playing a huge factor already. When Adobe took over Pagemaker from Aldus, it caused a few blinks, but not many. If we found ourselves saying Apple Photoshop sometime in the future... I don't... I really don't know that I'd have a problem with it.

    ~ CB
  7. Blue Velvet Moderator emeritus

    Jul 4, 2004
  8. rdowns macrumors Penryn


    Jul 11, 2003
    I don't think a good business argument can be made for any company listed here except maybe Armani. :D

    Cafe Press? Yeah, that's the ticket.

    Apple should only be interested in buying a company whose IP can help Apple with a strategic product.
  9. Cleverboy thread starter macrumors 65816


    May 25, 2007
    Pocket Universe, nth Dimensional Complex Manifold
    You don't think Cafe Press has IP that Apple would find useful to its consumer-focused business? Maybe I'm missing something, but there has been a distinct movement Apple has been making towards allowing people to publish things created with its software directly through the Internet.

    If I could publish a CD Album to my Apple Press store and iTunes with one click, or publish a T-Shirt, Mug, or Calendar design drectly from iPhoto for sale on my Apple Press store, I think it'd be fairly ingenious. I've been watching Cafe Press grow up over the years, from doing simple white t-shirts, to printing more complicated black t-shirt and sleeve designs. If they wrapped certain Cafe Press features into the dot Mac system... combined with their current offerings, it sounds like it'd be an awesome no-brainer for a lot of wanna-be creators. In terms of its infrastructure and innovation, I'd think they were a natural fit for average people. Stores set up through Cafe Press have been mentioned in the Wall Street Journal for their traffic, timeliness and appeal. They aren't exactly under the radar.

    ~ CB
  10. John Jacob macrumors 6502a

    John Jacob

    Feb 11, 2003
    Columbia, MD
    Seconded. I really need a new suit free with my next Mac. :D None of the companies listed make much sense for Apple.
  11. dogtanian macrumors 6502


    Jun 26, 2007
    Bournemouth, UK
    I'd love to see Apple buy LiteScribe or at the very least include it in some of their drives!

    From the list I'd pick El Gato but Apple could make a simple and cheap solution in-house. It's far too late now though, all in one and media systems have included tuners for years...
  12. JNB macrumors 604


    Oct 7, 2004
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    They could buy my company! Cap's under $1.5B. Chump change!
  13. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    Of those listed, the only company that makes any sense is Adobe. Adobe's products are essential to the Mac. However, the company is one of the most mercurial in the industry. With each new release, Adobe titles become less Mac-like. Have you seen the new Adobe Media Viewer? :rolleyes: I have a personal issue with Adobe's continued development of FrameMaker for Windows and Unix, but not the Mac. Adobe climbed into bed with Microsoft to develop OpenType despite the fact that Microsoft would kill Adobe in a New York minute if it had the chance. An Apple purchase of Adobe would bring some much needed discipline to the company and would ensure that Mac users would have tools we need.

    The TV plays such as EyeTV and TiVo don't bring Apple anything it can't provide on its own. Their functionality can easily be added to the Apple TV if that is what Apple wants to do.

    Nintendo? Come on. How are the Xbox and Xbox 360 working out for Microsoft?

    Palm is a dying platform. What do you expect Palm to provide that have on the iPhone or expect to be added to the iPhone in the near future?

    I would like to suggest another software developer, ACD Systems. This purchase might be redundant if Apple bought Adobe. The last Mac version of its signature title was ACDSee 1.6.9. However, ACD Systems owns a storied title in the history of the Mac, Canvas. Canvas was the first and best integrated vector/raster graphics editor. It suffered for years now under the incompetent custody of Deneba and now ACDSee. The product is now Windows only and only a sideline at that. Yet Canvas occupied a slot that is no longer supported by anyone, the prosumer graphics editor. I believe that there is still a market for such an app.
  14. Eric Lewis macrumors 68020

    Eric Lewis

    Feb 4, 2007
    CANADA? eh?

    Maybe they should buy Microsoft..and

    just shut it down?
  15. phungy macrumors 68020


    Dec 5, 2006
    Other, read that Apple wants the 700Mhz spectrum for cellular service. (Google wants it too) Let's see who wins...
  16. CalBoy macrumors 604


    May 21, 2007
    Apple wouldn't need to buy all of Adobe in order to gain a controlling interest. GE, for example, owns 80% of NBC-Universal. Apple could use its cash on hand to buy half of Adobe now(+1), and then slowly buy up the remaining shares over time.
    Whatever, he needs some new jeans! He's been wearing them for 30 years!:eek:
    Oh wouldn't that be ironic after all the competition Microsoft ended with buyouts.
  17. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Agreed, but perhaps the Prada Group would be a better option? :p

    I don't really see any benefit to Apple in owning any of those companies. Sorry. I respect a couple of them, but I still don't see the point. The closest is if they could find a way to engineer future Nintendo products to run on versions of OS X, there might be some synergy there. But meh, Nintendo seems to be doing fine on its own.
  18. psychofreak Retired


    May 16, 2006
    Httpmail or MacFreePops: To build either into OSX and Mail, making MacFreePops Universal of course...also for use on iPhone

    VLC player and Perian: Out of the box codecs

    They should join with Jeff Han too
  19. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus


    Jan 9, 2004
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    You see the obvious problem with both of these, right?

    When a piddly open source developer creates a program like FreePOPs that makes use of webmail to simulate POP access, everyone politely looks the other way. When an industry major does something like that, I don't think anyone's going to ignore the fact that it's probably a violation of terms to use the website in that fashion.

    As for VLC and Perian, again, I'm under the impression that a number of the codecs involved there are operating in a legal grey area. Even the linux distributions now make you frequently install a "restricted components" bundle or somesuch to gain access to these codecs because of the legal issues.
  20. Cleverboy thread starter macrumors 65816


    May 25, 2007
    Pocket Universe, nth Dimensional Complex Manifold
    Either buy Adobe, or start releasing the Photoshop equivalent we all know Apple is sitting on. --Or buy Pixelmator. :D

    Purchasing EyeTV doesn't do much except catapult Apple forward with existing software and allowing it not to kill a major 3rd party developer in the space. They have a lot of iTunes integration and infrastructure Apple wouldn't need to work out from scratch. They could recreate it all from scratch, but I honestly think a purchase would be simpler.

    Well, Nintendo is the only console seller cutting pure profits for each sale, aren't they? Rocketship, my friend. They need help in the production department though. Right now, Apple is working on the casual gaming market while Nintendo focuses on the more active gamers. Glove.

    At this point, I wonder if Palm represents much more than its technology agreements and customer base. They're deflating like a balloon, and the sound is unnerving.

    I loved Deneba's Canvas. I don't know why you've such a problem with them. They did a great job, I just think the prosumer market wasn't what it was cracked up to be. I mean, Infini-D anyone?

    ~ CB
  21. martychang macrumors regular

    Sep 3, 2007
    The thing that comes to mind to me is that Palm owns the rights to BeOS. BeOS was designed to be a successor to Mac OS 9, and was considered for being the foundation of Mac OS X before NeXT. NeXT was probably the smarter(albeit way too expensive) decision, but BeOS has some amazing stuff that still hasn't been replicated, particularly in the kernel.

    It's totally multithreaded, even on the Pentium 2's of the day it could load things instantly and when overloaded it could allocate the processing power to the currently selected task, or the task otherwise deemed most important(i.e. capturing video, to avoid glitches and skipped frames). The system was always responsive, never hanged, and hardly ever crashed. Many of these things are around in some way in Mac OS X, but there's definitely something to learn from BeOS, particularly in the responsiveness area.
  22. swampfox macrumors newbie

    Aug 11, 2007
    What Apple needs to do (and I believe that they are on the right track) is to make a multimedia platform that can do what TiVo does, but also incorperates a gaming system (like the Wii or 360) to make a complete media package. Apple made a brilliant move with the Apple TV and I believe that within the next couple of years we could see a product that gives us games, movies, and recording capabilities. Apple has made it's pressence known, now Apple need's to pursue the rest of the industry.:apple:
  23. iMacFan78 macrumors regular


    Mar 26, 2006
    I voted for El Gato. I believe that it's time that we see TV tuners put into Macs. Other manufacturers offer TV tuners in their PCs, and it'd be nice to be able to use the Mac as a TV without any extra hardware.
  24. TheBonk macrumors 6502


    May 22, 2007
    Other. Wireless spectrum. I totally see Apple bidding on it.
  25. twoodcc macrumors P6


    Feb 3, 2005
    Right side of wrong
    of course i voted for Nintendo, but i really don't see that happening. would love for any of these to happen though

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