Apple drops interest in Dropbox for iCloud

by Brenon Daly

Earlier this year, rumors were flying that Apple was putting together a bid – valued at more than $500m – for cloud storage startup Dropbox. That speculation obviously didn’t go anywhere, but it looked a whole lot more credible in light of Monday’s introduction of Apple’s online storage and synching offering, iCloud. The service, which will be free for up to 5GB, will be available in the fall.

On the face of it, Apple’s new service looks mostly like a convenient and efficient way to move iTunes into the cloud. Viewed in that rather limited way, iCloud appears to compete most directly with Google and Amazon, which have both launched online music storage offerings in recent weeks. But as is the case with most of what Apple does, there’s much more going on.

In addition to automatically storing and synching media files such as music, photos and movies, iCloud will keep up-to-date documents as well as presentation and other files. In other words, the uses for iCloud are pretty much exactly the same reasons why some 25 million people also use Dropbox. Is this yet another case of a Silicon Valley giant initially looking to buy but then opting instead to build?

Meltwater in the market

Contact: Brenon Daly

Having built a $100m business with its core media monitoring offering over the past decade, Meltwater Group is looking at picking up a small company or two this year to speed the development of the company’s next big line of business, CEO Jorn Lyseggen said earlier this week. Speaking at the Pacific Crest Emerging Technology Summit, Lyseggen said the bootstrapped private company is ‘leaning toward’ deals that bring specific IP that could bolster its recently launched products around media distribution and ad spending analytics, among other areas.

Meltwater used that strategy about a year ago to help expand an existing offering that monitored social media sources. The company already had a product, Meltwalter Buzz, before picking up BuzzGain, a 25-person startup. (We understand that Meltwater paid less than $5m for BuzzGain, its first acquisition.) Recently launched offerings by Meltwater, which claims 18,000 customers, include Meltwater Press, Meltwater Reach, Meltwater Drive and Meltwater Talent