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BBC Learning English

Words in the News

11th May 2011
Microsoft is buying Skype
Microsoft has confirmed it will buy the internet phone service Skype. The $8.5 billion deal
will connect Microsoft with the 663 million people around the world who use Skype. It is the
most money Microsoft has spent to buy another company. Rory Cellan-Jones reports:
One is the giant business, whose software powers more than 90% of the world's computers.
The other is the firm which has revolutionised the way many communicate. Now Skype is
being swallowed up by Microsoft.
It's just eight years since Skype started helping people to make calls over the internet for
nothing, and this is the third time it's been bought and sold.
Microsoft has been struggling to prove it can compete with the likes of Google and Apple.
Now as it tries to make an impact on the mobile-phone world, it wants Skype to help it
become a bigger force.
Skype is now used by 170 million people around the world, not just on their computers, but
on the move - on their mobile phones and even on their tablet devices.
Microsoft wants to tap in to this connected community, but it's paying a huge price for a
business that isn't even profitable.
Rory Cellan-Jones, BBC News

Words in the News

British Broadcasting Corporation 2011

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Vocabulary and definitions


here, runs, or allows the computer to operate effectively


introduced very big changes or new ideas to

swallowed up

here, bought and taken over by a larger company

over the internet

using a computer connected to the internet

the likes of

here, companies such as

to make an impact on

to be successful and have a strong effect on

a bigger force

here, a larger organisation with more influence

on the move

while travelling

to tap in to

to become involved in or to make use of

connected community

group of people who are linked or in contact with each


More on this story: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-13343600

Read and listen to the story and the vocabulary online: http://bbc.in/mwlBto

Words in the News

British Broadcasting Corporation 2011

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