Microsoft (MSFT) has reportedly beat out Apple and Google to acquire R2 Studios, a home automation/media-sharing startup launched by Sling Media founder Blake Kirkorian. Kirkorian's recent resignation from Amazon's board had heightened M&A speculation. R2 has released a costly Android app for managing home automation systems and has been awarded patents for controlling electronic devices, but has been quiet about its broader plans. Look for Microsoft to bundle R2's tech with the Xbox, Windows 8/RT, and Windows Phone. (previous)
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