Yahoo buys Snapchat rival Blink – Mobile World Live

Yahoo buys Snapchat rival Blink

14 MAY 2014

Yahoo acquired the maker of photo messaging app Blink, as it continues to bolster its mobile proposition by buying in expertise.

Blink allows users to send text, photo and video messages that self-destruct once they have been viewed by recipients — an approach for which the term ‘ephemeral messaging’ has been coined.

Announcing the deal on its website, the Blink team said it is looking forward to “the possibilities that will come from bringing the Blink vision to Yahoo”. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

As has been the case with previous app acquisitions, it seems Yahoo is keen to make use of the expertise behind Blink rather than continue to offer the product. Blink said in a blog post that its Android and iOS apps will be shut down in the next few weeks.

Yahoo took a similar approach with its $30 million acquisition of Summly, which it integrated into its successful Yahoo News Digest app, launched at the beginning of the year.

Yahoo has seen increased usage of its mobile apps as its strategy of frequent updates appears to be having an impact, according to CEO Marissa Mayer.

Facebook earlier this week pulled its Poke app, which offers similar functionality to Blink, from Apple’s App Store. The app was met with a lacklustre response, likely to have been down to Snapchat’s dominance of the market.

Facebook clearly believes ephemeral messaging has potential though, reportedly having a $3 billion offer to acquire Snapchat rejected in November last year.

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Tim Ferguson

Tim joined Mobile World Live in August 2011 and works across all channels, with a particular focus on apps. He came to the GSMA with five years of tech journalism experience, having started his career as a reporter... More

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