Twitter has purchased live video streaming startup Periscope for slightly less than $100 million, apparently putting Periscope in competition with Twitter's own Meerkat app.
The Wall Street Journal reported the Periscope deal and the price, noting that it closed about a month ago. In a somewhat confusing timeline, Twitter's own Meerkat app has now attracted 60,000 users in the eight days since it launched that service, which is similar to what Periscope offers.
Meerkat CEO and co-founder Ben Rubin told FastCompany that Meerkat was designed to help marketers "cultivate their own identity on the platform; it just allows them to live stream from their Twitter account" without cultivating their own identify. "It makes it easy for the people making those marketing decisions to jump quickly into the platform because they don't have to worry about a whole new profile to maintain and cultivate."
Rubin, meanwhile, told the Journal that Twitter's acquisition of Periscope is "wonderful" since "Twitter is a smart company and they know what they're doing. It's great for the space."
That makes Twitter's decision to purchase Periscope--which has yet to be launched and has been in beta testing for the past four months--so interesting. Does it or doesn't it compete with or impact Meerkat? It's hard to know since the app hasn't come out of beta testing. Silicon Beat, which also reported on the story, said the app is getting a good look from Jessica Verrili, a member of Twitter's corporate development team, as well as from members of Twitter's executive management team and board of directors, including Dick Costolo, the company's CEO, and Jack Dorsey, a company co-founder who now holds the title of chairman.
Not a tweet could be heard from Twitter, which told Silicon Beat: "We don't comment on rumor and speculation."
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