FTC To Review Antitrust Potential of Google’s Waze Acquisition
According to a report in The Wall Street Journal, the FTC may have asked Google to hang tight and refrain from baking Waze into its software and service until the investigation is complete. At issue for the FTC is whether or not Waze would have become a direct competitor with Google and its Google Maps software, and whether any evidence exists that the search giant acquired the company simply to prevent its rivals from buying Waze.
In addition to Facebook, which uses Microsoft's Bing Maps technology, Apple is known to have been interested in acquiring Waze. Apple's own Maps service already integrates some information from Waze so it would have been a natural fit, though it's not clear how much Apple may have offered the company, or if a bid was even made.
Acquiring Waze for $1.1 billion represents the fourth largest purchase in Google's history.