Microsoft, Adobe execs discuss Apple, potential merger in meeting

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer and other company top brass recently held a meeting with those in charge of Adobe to discuss a number of topics, including a partnership or even a merger to counter Apple's success in the mobile phone market.



The purported meeting, revealed by The New York Times, involved Ballmer and a "small entourage of deputies," who spoke with Adobe's CEO, Shantanu Narayen. The meetings were said to last over an hour, and the subject of Apple was one of the main talking points.



The report also indicated that Microsoft could potentially acquire Adobe. It was said the companies discussed the "blockade" Steve Jobs had placed on Adobe's Web-based Flash software, banning it from use on iOS-powered devices like the iPhone and iPad.



"The New York Times learned about these meetings through employees and consultants to the companies who were involved in the discussions that took place or familiar with their organization, all of whom asked not to be identified as they are unauthorized to speak publicly by Microsoft or Adobe," author Nick Bilton wrote. "Those involved in the meeting, from its logistical set up to the discussion that took place between the two companies, were instructed to stay very quiet about the two companies holding council."



One person familiar with the conversation told the Times that Microsoft had eyed Adobe for a possible acquisition several years ago, but the deal reportedly fell apart because Microsoft was worried about scrutiny from the U.S. Dept. of Justice.



If such a deal were to become a reality, it would be an aligning of two of Apple's biggest rivals. While the Mac vs. PC wars have raged for years, Apple's crusade against Adobe is more recent, beginning with the introduction of the first iPhone, and its exclusion of Flash, in 2007.



This year, the rivalry became extremely heated when Narayen and Jobs exchanged a public war of words earlier this year, after Jobs published a letter in which he said Flash is the No. 1 cause of crashes on the Mac. Narayen fired back, and said that any issues are the fault of "the Apple operating system."



Ballmer in years past has caught the ire of Apple supporters, as the Microsoft executive has repeatedly dismissed the growth of the Mac platform as a "rounding error." Last July, he said gaining share from the roughly 10 million computers Apple sells a year is a "limited opportunity."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 138
    guarthoguartho Posts: 1,208member
    So help me, if a talking paperclip or puppy tries to "help" me use After Effects things will get very ugly very quickly.
  • Reply 2 of 138
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 42,826member
    Hands over your head, keep 'em low to the ground.

    Time to duck and cover, the bombs are comin' down.

    Duuuuck and cover, duuuuck and cover.

    If you don't duck and cover, you'll cease to be around.




    –-50's Cold War kids' jingle prophesying the death of Microsoft and Adobe in a merger.
  • Reply 3 of 138
    Combining two old school, lackluster companies with little innovation does not make one great company \
  • Reply 4 of 138
    So is Microsoft merging under Adobe?
  • Reply 5 of 138
    good, it is good for apple, so apple can create its own photoshop suites.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer and other company top brass recently held a meeting with those in charge of Adobe to discuss a number of topics, including a partnership or even a merger to counter Apple's success in the mobile phone market.



    ....



  • Reply 6 of 138
    Jesus Christ. This is why Apple should have bought Adobe years ago.
  • Reply 7 of 138
    cimcim Posts: 197member
    Apple would never let Microsoft grab Adobe. And if Microsoft somehow got Adobe, Apple would likely buy up Quark, Corel, and a few other companies to have a compelling Creative Suite alternative for the Mac. It would probably be the death of Adobe, since the majority of creatives are Mac users.
  • Reply 8 of 138
    This is a scary thought for all us graphic designers that rely on Creative Suite to do our jobs.
  • Reply 9 of 138
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 28,788member
    Time for Apple to bite the bullet and buy Adobe with those spare billions laying around doing nothing.
  • Reply 10 of 138
    mdriftmeyermdriftmeyer Posts: 7,100member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anakin1992 View Post


    good, it is good for apple, so apple can create its own photoshop suites.



    It's not as if they don't have the in-house talent like the creators of TIFFany working for them or nothing.
  • Reply 11 of 138
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by CIM View Post


    Apple would never let Microsoft grab Adobe. And if Microsoft somehow got Adobe, Apple would likely buy up Quark, Corel, and a few other companies to have a compelling Creative Suite alternative for the Mac. It would probably be the death of Adobe, since the majority of creatives are Mac users.



    I don't think anybody has ever used "Quark" and "compelling Creative Suite alternative" in the same sentence before. Funny stuff. :o)
  • Reply 12 of 138
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Time for Apple to bite the bullet and buy Adobe with those spare billions laying around doing nothing.





    for $30 billions( $14 billion market value ), i think apple can create its own stuff instead of buying adobe.
  • Reply 13 of 138
    Heh heh. Let them. They'll deserve each other. It'll be a great example of 2 + 2 = 3.5 (not counting the premium -- even though they'll call it a merger -- that MSFT will have to pay to ADBE, which will make it an even worse proposition for MSFT's shareholders).
  • Reply 14 of 138
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post


    Time for Apple to bite the bullet and buy Adobe with those spare billions laying around doing nothing.



    I doubt either company (Apple or Microsoft) would be permitted to buy Adobe. And Apple would never do it as it would be a terrible and huge investment ($16B) for little gained.

    In any case, I think Apple could create a competitive "creative suite" pretty quickly without buying Adobe. In fact, I'll bet they already have the foundation for such a suite largely planned, just in case. If they need it, they'd just spend a few hundred million for a few smaller companies and have their suite within a year (as an example look at the purchase of PA Semi and the development of the A4 SOC.)
  • Reply 15 of 138
    donarbdonarb Posts: 52member
    I think they just want to bury the hatchet over their failed "PDF killer" Metro strategy:



    Microsoft's Metro takes aim at Adobe
  • Reply 16 of 138
    How can it be called a blockade if Adobe doesn't even have a full Flash for iOS to be released?
  • Reply 17 of 138
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anakin1992 View Post


    for $30 billions( $14 billion market value ), i think apple can create its own stuff instead of buying adobe.



    Correct. Apple should focus on its core strength, which is to build, not buy (unless it is a fairly early-stage target to subsequently build on, along the lines of a SoundJam, i.e., 'A&D' instead of 'R&D').
  • Reply 18 of 138
    I've been a Apple user since 1989 and I love my Mac but I need the creative suite to get my work done. If they merged, I would have to look into buying a PC as sad as that makes me. Damn, I hope this doesn't happen.



    I guess an alternative would be to go buy the fastest mac I could afford and the latest version of the Creative Suite and see if I could wait out this tragedy until something changed. That should at least get me two years before I would have to make another hardware decision. It's like battening the hatches before the storm.
  • Reply 19 of 138
    If you really want to see what happens when Micro$oft buys a software company and then tries to integrate it into it's family of desktop applications, look no further than Microsoft Office Visio.



    Visio tries to use it's own nomenclature mixed with Office terms and labels in the ultimate example of a frustrating user experience. For example: Excel = "Font Color" Visio = "Text Color".
  • Reply 20 of 138
    desuserigndesuserign Posts: 1,316member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    Heh heh. Let them. They'll deserve each other. It'll be a great example of 2 + 2 = 3.5 (not counting the premium that MSFT will have to pay to ADBE, even though they'l call it a 'merger', which will make it even worse).



    More like 2+2≅2,

    I would think.

    After all, since when (in the last 10 years or so) has Microsoft bennefitted themselves by buying a company?
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