Trending: The most powerful console yet, or a refrigerator? Reactions to Microsoft’s new Xbox Series X


Google has made some big buys over the years, expanding its presence in mobile phones (Motorola) and online advertising (DoubleClick). And now it is making a huge bet in the connected home through its $3.2 billion acquisition of Nest, the maker of the digital thermostats and smoke detectors.

As the chart from Statista shows, Nest represents the second biggest acquisition in the history of Google.

The Nest Protect

What’s interesting about the chart — at least at the upper end — is how Microsoft has also followed Google’s lead with two huge acquisitions in similar arenas. It is paying $7.2 billion for mobile device maker Nokia’s devices and services division (a deal that has yet to close), and it paid $6.3 billion for online advertising giant aQuantive. (See previous GeekWire report: After the writedown: How Microsoft squandered its $6.3B buy of ad giant aQuantive).

My take: Google appears to be better at acquiring companies, and then integrating them into the fold. (YouTube and DoubleClick are perfect examples).

Also, could this signal that Microsoft may make a bet in the connected home arena? It has certainly been investing in products for the home for years.

First things first, though, Microsoft needs to find its leader who will set the stage for growth in the coming years.

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