updated 01:55 pm EST, Fri December 11, 2009
Deal estimated to be worth $50 to $60 million
Apple may be ready to buy VoIP business iCall, claims a source in contact with Silicon Alley Insider. In addition to featuring a Windows client, iCall also provides VoIP services through an iPhone app and a limited web client. Apple and iCall are allegedly already in talks, working on a deal estimated to be worth $50 to $60 million.
iCall CEO Arlo Gilbert has refused to confirm or deny the existence of negotiations. It is not certain why Apple would buy VoIP technology, as it is currently linked to a number of cellular carriers which might object if it provided an alternative to iPhone plans. The company could be looking to take a greater share of revenue from iPhone owners however, or simply quash competition. It may alternately be looking to futureproof itself and/or gain the "iCall" trademark.
Apple recently confirmed the acquisition of Lala, a service that offers music streaming via the web. The worth of the deal remains unknown. Corporations like Apple are known to engage in buying sprees during recessions, taking advantage of weakened values to build their own portfolios.