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10 Tech Predictions for 2012

Stocks in this article: AAPL AMZN HPQ EBAY GOOG T LEAP GRPN NDAQ NYX MA V SBUX

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- In 2011, daily deal sites flooded our in-boxes, tablets and smartphones continued to show stronger growth than personal computers, and social media became relevant across the globe.

So what will 2012 bring? Here are 10 predictions about what the coming year may have in store for tech watchers everywhere, some more likely than others.

Facebook Goes Public

This one is almost guaranteed to happen, as The Wall Street Journal reported earlier this week that the company is looking to raise $10 billion in early 2012, at a valuation of $100 billion. The social media giant will also likely be over the 500 individual investor mark by that time frame, and the Securities and Exchange Commission requires companies to file to go public once they have reached that number of investors.

Twitter Gets Acquired

Twitter has become the go-to destination to learn the zeitgeist of any given moment with people able to tweet 140 characters worth of whatever they feel like at any hour of the day, and the micro-blogging service could be approached by a number of different suitors, including the aforementioned Facebook.

An interesting possibility is Google (GOOG). The Internet search giant launched Google Plus, its own social media presence in 2011, but may still feel increasing pressure to spend some of its $39 billion in cash on an acquisition of Twitter, which was recently valued at $8 billion.

AT&T, T-Mobile Merger Goes Through

AT&T (T) announced the deal to acquire T-Mobile USA from parent Deutsche Telekom(DTEGY.PK) for $39 billion back in March 2011 but the transaction has run into regulatory resistance and its prospects for completion are dim.

The thing is though the transaction was never going to pass muster in its initial form, as analysts and the media speculated all along. AT&T plans to record $4 billion charge related to a break-up fee in the fourth quarter but there's still a chance the acquisition could come to pass in 2012, albeit in a very different form.

Some have speculated that AT&T and T-Mobile will share a network, or that AT&T sells some of its existing assets to Leap Wireless (LEAP) in order to win regulatory approval.

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