Bill Gates thinks that Microsoft's TikTok acquisition will be a ‘poisoned chalice’

TikTok, the famous short-form video app is going through a tough time these days. The Chinese company ByteDance which owns TikTok is receiving a lot of offers and bids from various investors. As per the last news about this, TikTok has been valued for $50 billion!

While ByteDance is receiving various deals and offers, US President Donald Trump has started an anti-TikTok crusade. Last year, TikTok became a target of a class-action lawsuit when it was accused of invading the privacy of users by extracting users’ data that can be misused anywhere by the company.

Now, Donald Trump has decided to ban TikTok and he has given an ultimatum to ByteDance that if it does not sell off TikTok by 15th September 2020, all the US operations and business with TikTok and ByteDance will come to an immediate end. Also, President Trump has recently issued a statement saying that the US government is privy to receive a suitable share when TikTok is sold off!

In this whole fiasco, amongst the many ‘suitors’ of TikTok, Microsoft has also shown its wish to acquire TikTok. Satya Nadella has even discussed this with President Trump, and Trump showed indifference to this alliance. When he was asked as to why he thinks that the US government should receive any ‘cut’ from the deal, he said that it does not matter to him if Microsoft buys it or if any other investor buys it. This implies that as long as the US Treasury gets a fair share from the deal, it does not matter to Trump who buys the company and who does not. It should all be done by 15th September anyway, and that’s that!

Now, interestingly, the ex-CEO and current technical advisor of Microsoft, Bill Gates has shared his opinion about Microsoft acquiring TikTok with the Wired Magazine, and has called the whole deal a ‘poisoned chalice.’ It clearly means that he does not find this deal beneficial for Microsoft and he is not at all enthusiastic about this acquisition.

He pointed out that being in social media is not a simple feat, and there are huge issues related to the encryption and security with which many tech companies struggle with.

Bill Gates has also expressed his confusion about why President Trump is so worked up about this whole issue, why he is adamant to ban TikTok and why is he stooping to ultimatums and weird statements now?

Not only Bill Gates, but many other people are also finding this deal quite nasty. Many critics are saying that Microsoft should focus on its apps like Skype, Teams, LinkedIn and should work on getting a better standing in front of its competitors rather than buying TikTok and begin something useless! The purchase of TikTok at the cost of $50 billion is 3% more of Microsoft’s current market cap of $1.6 trillion. So, Microsoft should think again carefully before proceeding with the deal and acquisition.


Photo: Jack Taylor / Getty Images

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