Apple may have expressed interest in possibly buying TikTok, according to a report, the latest in a swirl of speculation about takeover interest in the virally popular social media app.
Apple is one of several parties that has expressed interest in TikTok, according to a report Tuesday from Axios, citing multiple unnamed sources; the report disclosed that none of those sources are inside Apple. The iPhone maker didn’t immediately respond to a message seeking comment, but Bloomberg reporters tweeted later that the company said it has had no discussion to buy TikTok and isn’t interested in a deal.
TikTok, known for its quirky, short videos, is owned by Beijing-based tech company ByteDance. Its links to China have stoked political pressure to explore a sale of TikTok to a US-based company or risk being potentially banned from operating in the US. President Donald Trump has said he’s considering an order to force ByteDance to divest itself of TikTok, and later suggested the US should receive a portion of the transaction price. (It’s unclear whether the government has the authority to request such a payment.)
Microsoft has been public about its “continuing discussion” for a TikTok takeover.
Later Tuesday, Fox Business reported that Google and Facebook both had expressed interest in TikTok in the past and that TikTok indeed has multiple suitors. Google and Facebook didn’t immediately respond to messages seeking comment.