Back in May, rumors surfaced that Google might purchase video game broadcasting service Twitch for $1 billion. Then, in July, Venturebeat claimed that its sources had confirmed that the deal between had been sealed. However, that confirmation may not have been accurate. It appears that Amazon is looking to snatch Twitch away from Google for
$1.1 billion (this figure has since been updated to $970M) according to The Wall Street Journal.
Citing unnamed sources, the site reports that the deal between Google and Twitch fell through and Amazon is sweeping in to make a play. The sources also claim that an announcement regarding the acquisition could be made today.
Whatever company makes the purchase, there is no doubt that such an acquisition by either company would be a lucrative one. Twitch has become a dominant force when it comes to streaming. In 2013 the service was reported to have 45 million users that watched 12 billion minutes of video. Now that it is available on Microsoft’s Xbox One and Sony’s PlayStation 4 consoles, the potential for growth and a larger audience is even greater.
Earlier this month, Twitch irked its users when it enacted some changes to its service. Twitch announced that it would no longer archive VODs on a permanent basis and it enabled copyright scans that will mute archived videos for 30-minute blocks if copyrighted music is detected. Speculation on the policy changes were, at the time, attributed to the potential purchase by Google.
Twitch ceo Emmett Shear has confirmed Amazon's acquisition of the video streaming service. In a letter to the community, Shear said, "Today, I’m pleased to announce we’ve been acquired by Amazon. We chose Amazon because they believe in our community, they share our values and long-term vision, and they want to help us get there faster. We’re keeping most everything the same: our office, our employees, our brand, and most importantly our independence. But with Amazon’s support we’ll have the resources to bring you an even better Twitch."