Google is close to finalizing one of the biggest acquisitions in its history, with a more than $1 billion deal for the maps and traffic app Waze, the Wall Street Journal reports. Here's what makes the move interesting:
- Google already has a maps app. You might have heard of it. And that might make anti-trust regulators raise an eyebrow. Google Maps and Waze may remain separate apps, one source says, but they'll share key data. Which means...
- Google Maps is about to get better. Waze's key competency is traffic data, drawing on users' GPS data to learn about its flow.
- Apple, Facebook out in the cold. Both the rival tech giants have at some point been rumored to acquire the Israeli startup. Microsoft, meanwhile, is an investor in Waze.
- It's a lot of money. The buy would be Google's fourth-largest ever, behind only Motorola, YouTube, and DoubleClick.
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