You can’t blame Google for wanting to flash a little cash – after all, with corporate competitors Apple and Facebook both splurging some spare change of late, the search engine giant must have been feeling left out. Fortunately, it’s reportedly managed to find a use for the coins stashed down the side of its office sofa – by acquiring streaming site Twitch for a cool $1 billion.

We should stress that at the time of typing the rumours are unconfirmed, but stem from the “trusted sources” of the equally trustworthy website Venture Beat. Seeing as this is a story that’s been running for a while – with the Wall Street Journal claiming that the parties were in takeover discussions a couple of months back – we’re inclined to believe the publication.

We don’t really know any further information on the deal, but investors are supposedly chuffed with the impending boost to their bank balance. Naturally, it seems that YouTube will take control of the business, but whether it will be folded into the firm’s existing video brand or continue to operate independently remains to be seen.

Of course, this could all have an impact on the PlayStation 4, as the system currently allows you to broadcast and view Twitch streams natively on the next-gen machine. With 50 million users and 1.1 million active members, the service certainly has a big fanbase – but it’s eclipsed by YouTube’s global audience of one billion users.

Should the report end up being true, we’d expect an official statement to be released over the coming days. It’s probably going to take a little while longer before we get to see Google’s long term intentions for the company, but we’ve got a sneaking suspicion that it won’t solely involve DOTA 2 and Starcraft streams.

[source venturebeat.com]