IBM is looking to further strengthen its Watson computer program, as reports indicate that the technology company is spending $2 billion to obtain the digital sector of the Weather Company.
The deal has not yet been officially confirmed, but word is that the two sides are extremely close on an agreement. The Weather Company is perhaps best known for operating The Weather Channel on television.
Technology analyst Peter Roe said, “This marks another move by IBM to increase the predictive power of its services, and the company will be looking to combine the weather forecasting unit with its Watson operation to build an 'insights' business."
The Watson computer, which has already won at Jeopardy!, become a chef and run its own food truck, might soon be able to predict the weather as well, if the deal ultimately goes through like most observers are expecting.
Meanwhile, IBM has been trying desperately to turn itself around by focusing on cloud storage and data analytics. The company has been heavily promoting its Watson division for a variety of functions.
One such area that IBM hopes to use Watson for is that of health care. The company recently spent $1 billion in order to purchase Merge Healthcare. With this purchase, the Watson computer can now provide millions of medical images.
The success of Watson has not helped IBM, as the company recently announced yet another quarter of declining sales figures. The recent announcement for the third quarter of this year showed that revenue for the company fell by 1% to $19.3 billion. Additionally, the company’s net income fell by 14% to $3 billion.
Now, IBM is trying to build an “ecosystem” around Watson in order to save the company. The computer, which is mostly known for its ability to trump humans on a game show, now offers more than 25 different services, using more than 50 various technologies.
Whether or not IBM can be saved the program remains to be seen. However, the company will have to act quickly before it loses all of its resources.