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As Apple continues to pile on the cash, so do the rumors that surround just what the company intends to do with it. At $76.2 billion in cash and securities, something has to give at some point, right? Two people familiar with the auction of the Hulu online video service have revealed that Apple may be putting some of that cash to use shortly.
According to the sources, who weren't authorized to speak publicly, Apple may be in early talks that could lead to an offer for Hulu.
Such an acquisition would give Apple a new subscription service and could help pit Cupertino up against the likes of Netflix.
"Part of the ecosystem of Apple's future is to include more video," notes Scott Sutherland, a Wedbush Securities Inc. analyst in San Francisco. "It's something they are focused on."
Both a Hulu spokeswoman, and a spokesman for Apple, declined comment.
The price tag for Hulu could exceed $2 billion according to data compiled by Bloomberg and SNL Kagan.
Sutherland pointed out that Apple doesn't typically make large acquisitions. By comparison, it's largest purchase has been the $400 million that was spent for NeXT Software Inc., which was the deal that would bring Steve Jobs back to Apple.
"Hulu would add a new element to their arsenal from a streaming and subscription standpoint," writes Brian Marshall, an analyst at Gleacher & Co. in San Francisco.
However, Apple's reportedly not alone in expressing interest. Morgan Stanley and Guggenheim Partners, bankers for Hulu, are also said to have garnered interest form the likes of Google, Yahoo Inc., AT&T Inc. as well as others. Microsoft had been in the bidding, but dropped out this week, said a person with knowledge of the matter.
With that, if Apple should acquire Hulu, what would you like to see happen with the purchase readers? Feel free to leave your thoughts below!
Follow this article's author, Matthew Tilmann on Twitter
(Image courtesy of mobilemarketingwatch.com)