Apple Inc held discussions in recent months about the possibility of making investments in Twitter to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars and to gain a social networking presence, according to a New York Times report, which cited people briefed on the matter as saying.
The iPhone maker which has never delved into social media dominated by Facebook Inc, at one point had mulled an investment that would have valued the microblogging service at $10 billion but the companies were not negotiating now, according to the newspaper.
According to the newspaper Apple declined comment, while Twitter did not respond to requests for comment on the deal, which the newspaper said might presage closer ties between the two.
Analysts say an investment in Twitter would hardly be a big financial move for Apple by any stretch, which has $117 billion in liquid investments. The iPhone maker, in a quiet move, agreed to buy a mobile security company for $356 million on Friday. But a move into social space would come as one of the Apple chief's most important strategic decisions they add.
They point out that a deal of the kind would also give Apple more access to Twitter's deep understanding of the social web, and make for a closer Twitter integration into Apple's products.
Twitter had seen rapid growth with 140 million monthly active users who post millions of short messages about their lives, the news and everything else. With an investment from Apple it would be able to bask in the light of a close relationship with a technology icon, and would instantly see its valuation jump, which, like that of other start-ups, has paled in the wake of Facebook's lacklustre market debut.