Apple Considered Purchasing AdMob?

Bloomberg reports that Apple is reported to have approached mobile advertising firm AdMob about a possible acquisition just prior Google's announcement that it had agreed to purchase the company for $750 million in stock.

AdMob Inc. was approached by Apple Inc. about an acquisition before the company agreed to a $750 million offer from Google Inc., according to people familiar with the matter.

Apple contacted AdMob a few weeks before Google made its bid, said one of the people, who declined to be identified because the negotiations weren't public.

It is unclear from the report's sources the extent of Apple's seriousness regarding the potential offer, but any interest at all on Apple's part appears to reveal that the company has considered moving beyond its traditional hardware and software offerings onto Google's turf of online and mobile application advertising.

Buying AdMob would have allowed Apple to expand into online advertising, a strategy that Nokia Oyj is pursuing, Weide said.

"If a lot of traffic goes through my devices, why can't I become the middleman that serves ads against that inventory?" Weide said. "AdMob would have allowed them to do that quickly."

Following on the heels of news that Apple is hiring iPhone game developers, Apple may be looking to move beyond simply providing the tools and infrastructure that have fed the iPhone's success and begin enhanced efforts to pursue its own App Store content and other revenue streams associated with the applications available in the store.

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