What’s Yahoo Planning to Do with These Video Tech Acquisitions?

/ Dec 10, 2013


Since joining Yahoo in 2012, CEO Marissa Mayer has been snatching up tech startups like a savings-crazed maniac on Black Friday. To date, the CEO has been responsible for the purchase of 25 tech companies more or less occupying the digital video, social, gaming, and content spaces. While several of the acquisitions have led to actual technology being integrated into pre-existing Yahoo platforms, most of Mayer’s buyouts have been in the name of, what the media calls, “employee shopping” or acqui-hires.

Case in point, the recently acquired QuikIO, as first reported by PandoDaily. Although reports are tentative, it seems as if the streaming app will be dissolved, leaving only three former QuikIO employees working for Yahoo. Among those three are VP of engineering Xumin Wu, CEO Michael Chen, and an unknown third member.

This follows Yahoo’s acquisition of Evntlive late last week, which was made with the intention of folding the streaming platform’s team into Yahoo’s video and music teams.

With the continued development of Yahoo Screen’s video library and team, Mayer’s strategy seems to be leaning towards creating a major-league video platform, paralleled only by the likes of Hulu and YouTube. But until the day Yahoo’s video service is on par with the web’s top platforms (it’s not close right now), we won’t fully know what Mayer has up her sleeve. So until then, let’s check out the video startups Yahoo has picked up under Mayer’s acquire-hungry watch:

December 4, 2012 – OnTheAir

Similar to Google Hangout, OnTheAir let users host live conversations across the web. The app was shuttered after the acquisition and OnTheAir’s team was moved to Yahoo’s San Francisco office.

May 17, 2013 – Tumblr

While not a video-specific acquisition per se, Tumblr has opened its doors to more video-centric integration in the past few years. With an alleged 30-50 million active users, you better believe Tumblr will (if it doesn’t already) play a large role in Yahoo’s social video push.

June 13, 2013 – Rondee

Echoing OnTheAir, Rondee gave users a free conference-calling service. The company was shut down after the acquisition and the staff joined Yahoo’s small business division.

July 2, 2013 – Qwiki

One of the few companies to stick around after a Yahoo buyout, Qwiki’s mobile app lets users create movies from recorded videos and photos saved in a phone.

December 6, 2013 – Evntlive

Evntlive revolutionized live concert viewing with streaming performances, which gave viewers access to multiple camera angles and interactive chat elements. After the acquisition, Evntlive issued a release, stating, “Although our service will no longer be available, we are excited to be joining Yahoo’s video team.”

December 9, 2013 – QuikIO

Using live media conversion, QuikIO allowed users to send photos, videos, and music to any mobile device from a desktop and viceversa. The company was shut down, and a Yahoo rep spoke to PandoDaily, saying: “I can confirm that three employees from QuikIO have joined Yahoo’s video team in Sunnyvale.”

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