The New York Times is reporting that eBay is planning to announce later today that it will be off-loading Skype.
Skype has been a huge weight around eBay’s neck ever since the auction giant bought the VoIP service in 2005. The two services never really fit together and at more than $3.1 billion, eBay is widely accepted to have paid far too much for Skype.
The purchaser is believed to be a group of private investors led by Netscape co-founder Marc Andreessen. eBay is reported to have been asking $2 billion for Skype – it will be interesting to see if they have settled for less.
If the reports are true, let’s hope that the new owners do something about the increasing amount of contact spam that is plaguing the service. Seriously, not a day goes by where I don’t receive messages from ‘bustyblonde18′ or the like saying “Hi, let’s chat!”. For a service being heavily promoted on TV as the perfect way to stay in touch with distant friends and family, being riddled with spam is not a good look.