Is Facebook Buying Plaxo? Do You Care?

Facebook is “one hundred percent” buying Plaxo, we’ve just heard from a source.

Wow, starting your story with that sentence certainly grabs your attention, doesn’t it? VentureBeat’s managed to make a statement of "fact" without actually saying that it has confirmed the story. Nice!

Well, assuming it’s "one hunded percent" then I guess we can soon expect our Plaxo accounts to start sniffing around our business contacts and phoning home to the Facebook mothership. You see, part of the reason why Facebook would be interested in coughing-up as much as $200M for Plaxo is that the service has done a great job of convincing us to install its plugins and share our contact info.

That’s the type of info that would be very valuable to Facebook…

Plaxo for Sale?

Rumors seem like more than just rumors when they’re printed by the New York Times, don’t they? Well here’s one that you can judge for yourself: Plaxo is for sale. The news comes from people who were “briefed on the [upcoming] auction.”

The company has yet to turn a profit, but seems to think it’s worth $100 million. With 15 million registered users, the company may be being a bit modest with its valuation. Facebook, after all, thinks it’s worth $10B (and that’s on the low side). With just under four times the registered members, a price tag of $2.5B would at least not be the most outlandish thing we’ve ever heard.

Updates on Your Contacts Coming to Your Gmail

A couple weeks ago, Google Reader started sending you shared items from your contacts. But it’s about to get worse. Google Operating System takes a look at the some of the Gmail code for a peek into the future—and if you didn’t like the Google Reader changes, you’re really not going to like this.

One of the reasons why the chat box can no longer be disabled in the new version of Gmail is that it will include some new features: updates from your contacts. Yes, they are the same contacts you barely know, but these updates will help you learn more about them.

Gmail’s code suggests that you’ll be able to delete the updates you don’t like, reply by email or post a comment. It’s not very clear what kind of updates you will receive, but they’re probably the latest important actions of your contacts from different Google services.

Digg Selling for $300 Million?

Rumors have surfaced again that Digg is looking to find a buyer. This time credibility to the reports is added in the form of news that Digg has retained the services of a private investment bank.

As VentureBeat reports

A reliable source just confirmed the company8217s plans, noting the company has hired Allen & Company, a tiny but influential private investment firm, to help broker a deal. The asking price is still $300 million, the source said.

This will come as no surprise. Rumors of a sale have been rampant for months, although until now we hear co-founder Jay Adelson has been trying to muster up interest in a sale. This is the first time Digg has hired a bank to shop the deal, we8217re told.

Google Testing Sidebar Results

It’s always fun whenever someone discovers one of Google’s many experiments with their search interface. 99% of the time, the discovered tests never materialize as a major rollout for Google, but it’s still worth noting.

Today, Valleywag has news that Google is testing the display of videos and products in the sidebar…

newgoogle_hilite-thumb.jpg

(image credit Valleywag.com)

Now, where have we seen this before, I wonder?

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GDrive Pending Once Again?

As Andy mentioned this morning, it looks like Google might have “unscrapped” their plans for “GDrive,” an online file storage service. Last July we first reported on the pending plans, but there was no real news again until August of this year, when it looked like Google was giving up the dream. And then the Wall Street Journal got ahold of the story, and it’s tearing up the airwaves bandwidth again.

Google is preparing a service that would let users store on its computers essentially all of the files they might keep on their personal-computer hard drives — such as word-processing documents, digital music, video clips and images, say people familiar with the matter. The service could let users access their files via the Internet from different computers and mobile devices when they sign on with a password, and share them online with friends. It could be released as early as a few months from now, one of the people said.

Facebook Dangles $85M for Chinese Foothold

image Have you noticed how whenever we discuss Friendster these days, we can’t help point out that most of its traffic comes from Asia? Just about everyone mentions this in a negative kind of way–as if the audience isn’t valuable. Well, there must be some value in the Asian market because Facebook reportedly offered $85 million to buy it’s largest Chinese peer, Zhanzuo.com.

According to the Times

A spokeswoman told The Times that Jack Zhang, Zhanzuo’s chief executive, and Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook founder, were acquainted but this did not mean that they intended to reach a deal – for the moment. She added, however, that “there could be more information by the end of the month”.