Google about to acquire YouTube?

As various publications express doubts over YouTube’s ability to remain profitable, the video hosting and search company may be in the process of getting snagged by Google. Rumor has it that Google is already in the final stages of acquiring YouTube, and that the buyout will cost the search giant a cool $1.6 billion.

TechCrunch says that, while the rumor is unsubstantiated, the source who disclosed it is “very good” and an unnamed venture capitalist gave confirmation of the rumored purchase price. All in all, the site reckons the rumor is about 40% likely to be “at least partially true.” According to market share numbers from earlier this year, YouTube holds the lion’s share of the video search market, while Google’s own Google Video is a distant fifth with just 6.5% of the market. Put together, the two would control roughly half the market.

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