Apple refutes rumors that it is trying to buy TikTok

Posted:
in General Discussion edited August 2020
A report claiming that Apple has expressed an interest in buying the TikTok video-sharing social network has been explicitly denied by the company.




Amid threats of a presidential ban and a potential acquisition of its US operations, news stories surrounding the fate of the highly popular TikTok have centered around how Microsoft was supposedly buying into the company. According to sources of one report, Apple could have been interested in making a similar purchase.

Multiple sources of Axios claim Apple "expressed interest" with buying TikTok from ByteDance. However, the report stresses that none of the sources are based within Apple, indicating the sources may be either connected more with TikTok's US outfit or a middleman between the two companies, if discussions were taking place.

A purchase of TikTok would be unusual for Apple for multiple reasons, including electing to wade into a business that is at the center of current political tensions between the United States and China.

Apple is not the only one apparently looking at TikTok besides Microsoft, with private equity firms claimed to be interested in making an investment. Of this group, it is claimed some are firms that do not already have any existing investments in ByteDance, though at the same time there is a pessimistic view that a private equity firm could accomplish the purchase without assistance from a strategic partner.

Microsoft was originally thought to be acquiring the TikTok US operations from ByteDance, with initial terms leaving the Chinese tech giant with a minority stake. A threat of a ban in the United States by President Trump led to ByteDance offering a total divestment of its US TikTok business to keep the deal alive.

President Trump has since declared that TikTok's US operations have to be sold to a US-based company by September 15, or face a ban and a shutdown of the US arm. Experts have warned against such an aquisition.

Update: Following the report, Axios reached out for comment. An hour after publication, Axios apparently received a response denying that it had interest in the buy.

State of play: Apple spokesperson tells Axios that there are no discussions about buying TikTok and the company isn't interested.

-- Dan Primack (@danprimack)
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 37
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 2,333member
    What in the hell would Apple want TikTok for? The brand alignment between the two couldn't be any further apart. Sounds like a pile of doo-doo to me.
    razorpitGG1cornchipmuthuk_vanalingamronn
  • Reply 2 of 37
    bageljoeybageljoey Posts: 1,937member
    I’m sure if there is anything to this report it is that TikTok is floating Apple’s name to try to drive the price up...
    cornchipmuthuk_vanalingamBeatsronnviclauyycwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 37
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,035member
    I disagree. Apple buying this would be very good. Apple has failed several times with social networking. Reading articles about this possible deal with Microsoft shows that it would give them immediate credibility with the huge number of young people who think of Microsoft as a grandfather, and not relevant. This would enable Apple’s dreams of a social network for their most important customers, and potential customers. These people would live  Apple to win this. About 85% of young people have iPhones. What better social network to have than one owned by Apple, as long as it’s relevant to them?

    but Apple isn’t terribly savvy when it comes to this, and likely it hasn’t occurred to them to buy into this.

    but Trump has also said, and like most of what he says, bizarrely stated that the U.S. treasury should also get partly paid for this deal, if it happens. As I said, bizarre.
    edited August 2020 commentsfpulseimagesdewmemuthuk_vanalingamlkrupp
  • Reply 4 of 37
    As much as I dislike tiktok, this whole thing is treading into some ugly territory that in the long run we might even be less happier with. Precedence, that’s all I will say.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 37
    XedXed Posts: 1,030member
    melgross said:
    I disagree. Apple buying this would be very good. Apple has failed several times with social networking. Reading articles about this possible deal with Microsoft shows that it would give them immediate credibility with the huge number of young people who think of Microsoft as a grandfather, and not relevant. This would enable Apple’s dreams of a social network for their most important customers, and potential customers. This peop,e would live Apple to won this. About 85% of young peop,e have iPhones. What better social network to have than one owned by Apple, as long as it’s relevant to them?

    but Apple isn’t terribly savvy when it comes to this, and likely it hasn’t occurred to them to buy into this.

    but Trump has also said, and like most of what he says, bizarrely stated that the U.S. treasury should also get partly paid for this deal, if it happens. As I said, bizarre.
    I agree on all counts.
    Beatswilliamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 37
    I seriously doubt this. TikTok does not bring anything to the table Apple needs and there is no branding opportunity. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 37
    melgross said:
    I disagree. Apple buying this would be very good. Apple has failed several times with social networking. Reading articles about this possible deal with Microsoft shows that it would give them immediate credibility with the huge number of young people who think of Microsoft as a grandfather, and not relevant. This would enable Apple’s dreams of a social network for their most important customers, and potential customers. This peop,e would live Apple to won this. About 85% of young peop,e have iPhones. What better social network to have than one owned by Apple, as long as it’s relevant to them?

    but Apple isn’t terribly savvy when it comes to this, and likely it hasn’t occurred to them to buy into this.

    but Trump has also said, and like most of what he says, bizarrely stated that the U.S. treasury should also get partly paid for this deal, if it happens. As I said, bizarre.
    This. I couldn't put it in better words. I think you nailed on the head.

    I do hope Apple buys it. I actually felt in love with TikTok (and made me change my mind about millennials - they are actually a very clever + smart + creative bunch). It would be a perfect addition to Apple's services
    williamlondon
  • Reply 8 of 37
    mr lizardmr lizard Posts: 282member
    Flat out denied by Apple, which is unusual as they normally just don’t bother to comment. 
    cornchipBeatsronnwatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 37
    If Apple buys TikTok I would download it again to my iPhone after removing it a few weeks ago after word that China is spying on users. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 37
    dewmedewme Posts: 3,827member
    If Apple buys TikTok I would download it again to my iPhone after removing it a few weeks ago after word that China is spying on users. 
    Is there actual evidence of TikTok spying on users outside of the clipboard snooping that several apps have been caught doing? 

    Since the dawn of cloud computing and service oriented architecture there’s always been concerns about data sovereignty. It’s a threat in all directions, and one of the reasons Apple and others have had to comply with hosting requirements from other countries. 

    Please, don’t get off on a political tangent, but has the potential issues with TikTok or any of the many other applications with similar sovereignty concerns actually resulted in an actual breach or are we still talking about the potential for a breach?
    cornchipmuthuk_vanalingamronn
  • Reply 11 of 37
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,857member
    I guess I could see them building it in to the camera app, since my main social network is iMessage/Messages, but I’ll believe it when it happens. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 37
    gatorguygatorguy Posts: 23,176member
    Some of the more recent comments are missing what Apple had to say:

    "Apple spokesperson tells Axios that there are no discussions about buying TikTok and the company isn't interested."
  • Reply 13 of 37
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,035member
    xiao-zhi said:
    I seriously doubt this. TikTok does not bring anything to the table Apple needs and there is no branding opportunity. 
    Totally  incorrect. Microsoft sees the potential in this. They’re right. Tic Toc is enormous with young people. Those are a very large part of Apple’s customer base, and they areal of Apple moving into the future. This would give them another reason to buy into, and stay with Apple. If somehow, Apple did acquire this, they should continue it as cross platform. Just as the iPod and iTunes convinced a lot of people to buy Macs, this could also move people to Apple.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 14 of 37
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 33,035member

    dewme said:
    If Apple buys TikTok I would download it again to my iPhone after removing it a few weeks ago after word that China is spying on users. 
    Is there actual evidence of TikTok spying on users outside of the clipboard snooping that several apps have been caught doing? 

    Since the dawn of cloud computing and service oriented architecture there’s always been concerns about data sovereignty. It’s a threat in all directions, and one of the reasons Apple and others have had to comply with hosting requirements from other countries. 

    Please, don’t get off on a political tangent, but has the potential issues with TikTok or any of the many other applications with similar sovereignty concerns actually resulted in an actual breach or are we still talking about the potential for a breach?
    There have been sever articles about how Trump is enraged over a female comedian (I’m terrible with names, and so don’t remember hers) who continually makes fun of him on TicTok by voice syncing to things he says. You know ?Trump. He hates being made fun of, and a number of people think that that’s a big part of this. Quite frankly, I wouldn’t be surprised, but it’s speculation.
    muthuk_vanalingamronnGeorgeBMacwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 37
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member
    melgross said:

    but Trump has also said, and like most of what he says, bizarrely stated that the U.S. treasury should also get partly paid for this deal, if it happens. As I said, bizarre.
    Trump has also said that the Mexicans will pay for the wall and that it might be possible to cure the coronavirus with an 'internal bleach cleaning' so let's not assume that any of this is actually going to happen.
    tmayBeatsronnGeorgeBMacwilliamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 37
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member

    melgross said:

    dewme said:
    If Apple buys TikTok I would download it again to my iPhone after removing it a few weeks ago after word that China is spying on users. 
    Is there actual evidence of TikTok spying on users outside of the clipboard snooping that several apps have been caught doing? 

    Since the dawn of cloud computing and service oriented architecture there’s always been concerns about data sovereignty. It’s a threat in all directions, and one of the reasons Apple and others have had to comply with hosting requirements from other countries. 

    Please, don’t get off on a political tangent, but has the potential issues with TikTok or any of the many other applications with similar sovereignty concerns actually resulted in an actual breach or are we still talking about the potential for a breach?
    There have been sever articles about how Trump is enraged over a female comedian (I’m terrible with names, and so don’t remember hers) who continually makes fun of him on TicTok by voice syncing to things he says. You know ?Trump. He hates being made fun of, and a number of people think that that’s a big part of this. Quite frankly, I wouldn’t be surprised, but it’s speculation.

    You are talking about the GENIUS that is Ms Sarah Cooper. Yes, it's possible, because her work has been a lock down treat for us in the UK. 

    There was a massive number of young TikTok users who organised themselves to get outdoor tickets for the Tulsa rally, and then didn't show up. So again, TikTok.

    edited August 2020 muthuk_vanalingamronnGeorgeBMacwilliamlondon
  • Reply 17 of 37
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 6,957member

    melgross said:
    xiao-zhi said:
    I seriously doubt this. TikTok does not bring anything to the table Apple needs and there is no branding opportunity. 
    Totally  incorrect. Microsoft sees the potential in this. They’re right. Tic Toc is enormous with young people. Those are a very large part of Apple’s customer base, and they areal of Apple moving into the future. This would give them another reason to buy into, and stay with Apple. If somehow, Apple did acquire this, they should continue it as cross platform. Just as the iPod and iTunes convinced a lot of people to buy Macs, this could also move people to Apple.
    Microsoft and Apple are completely different companies. Microsoft acquires companies to acquire customers, and after they've done it, the customers usually start complaining that the service they've bought has gone to hell (Skype and LinkedIn). 

    Apple acquires technology and talent to implement a planned strategy. I don't really see how buying TikTok helps with that strategy. 
    Beatsronnwilliamlondonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 18 of 37
    razorpitrazorpit Posts: 1,796member
    Rayz2016 said:
    melgross said:

    but Trump has also said, and like most of what he says, bizarrely stated that the U.S. treasury should also get partly paid for this deal, if it happens. As I said, bizarre.
    Trump has also said that the Mexicans will pay for the wall and that it might be possible to cure the coronavirus with an 'internal bleach cleaning' so let's not assume that any of this is actually going to happen.
    Wow, genuinely surprised you didn’t include the “good people” lie. No matter how many times you repeat a lie it doesn’t make it true. The Mexicans are paying for the wall through the new trade deal, and contrary to CNN’s claims he never said to inject bleach or drink fish tank cleaner. Only the people suffering from Orange Man Bad syndrome believe stupid stuff like that.

    Getting back to the topic at hand, I do agree with you on TikTok not having a role in Apple’s planned strategy.
    Beatswatto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    elijahg said:
    What in the hell would Apple want TikTok for? The brand alignment between the two couldn't be any further apart. Sounds like a pile of doo-doo to me.

    Well, Microsoft wants it so people can think they're "cool".

    At least it will fit with Apple. Not saying I want Apple to own it as I can think of 100 better acquisitions.
  • Reply 20 of 37
    BeatsBeats Posts: 2,532member
    melgross said:
    I disagree. Apple buying this would be very good. Apple has failed several times with social networking. Reading articles about this possible deal with Microsoft shows that it would give them immediate credibility with the huge number of young people who think of Microsoft as a grandfather, and not relevant. This would enable Apple’s dreams of a social network for their most important customers, and potential customers. These people would live  Apple to win this. About 85% of young people have iPhones. What better social network to have than one owned by Apple, as long as it’s relevant to them?

    but Apple isn’t terribly savvy when it comes to this, and likely it hasn’t occurred to them to buy into this.

    but Trump has also said, and like most of what he says, bizarrely stated that the U.S. treasury should also get partly paid for this deal, if it happens. As I said, bizarre.

    Can you give details? TikTok will still be available on Apple devices and I don't see how this will help younger people stay with Apple.

    The only ideas I can come up with is TikTok being ad-free for Apple customers and punishing knockoff customers with ads. But the acquisition cost may not be worth it.
    Another idea is tight integration with iMessage.

    It's a risky move as TikTok seems to be at it's peak and can easily fall, this isn't like Beats. Next year a new platform may be all the rage.

    Still disappointed that Twitter killed Vine, allowing this to happen.
    watto_cobra
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