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So I get up to work first day after a hard time relaxing over the public holiday weekend and guess what - the web's full of rumours that Apple is about to swoop and buy Twitter.

The value being put on the deal by anyone wanting to tout the story is $700 million. This is my first sanity check on the tale. Twitter's a great little company and it's done a lot for people - they've criticised it (but don't let those anti-Twitter journalists tell you they weren't paid just as much for bitching about it as they would have received for praising it, they've made money out of it), they've praised it, they've used it...and it hasn't turned a single dime in profit. Not only that but all the interviews I've seen with the founders suggest they don't actually know how they're going to harness all those users and turn them into money just yet.

So $700 is a very generous valuation indeed when the whole shebang might not make money.

The only other reason Apple would want to buy the company once it had realised there would be no hard cash involved would be if it there were real synergy between the two organisations in product terms. Now, a lot of people - the Guardian for one - have pointed to Apple being a hardware company and not making software. I'm not quite so sure; we have iLife, iWork and of course the whole Apple operating system. What we don't have, however, is any real killer application, something that means people outside the Apple arena really, really want Apple...

Except of course we do. We have iTunes, we have iPods, we have all those things. Apple, in short, is doing very nicely evangelising itself.

I suppose Apple might just want Twitter at the heart of every Mac user's universe, but I'm not sure why it would. My guess is that this reportage of a merger is a little overreaction to what's going to turn out to be an unfounded rumour.

Unless someone else can think why Apple might be interested in such a deal..?

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