Daily Archives: March 11, 2010

As the FTC lays the groundwork for a possible challenge to Google’s purchase of AdMob, it is instructive to look at something else Google has already done to gain a strong foothold in the mobile ad business.

Any advertiser that bids through the AdWords system gives Google complete authority over which devices its messages are seen on – that is, unless the advertiser makes a specific election not to appear on mobile handsets. The ads might run alongside search results on a PC or a laptop, or they might appear on a smartphone like the iPhone.

Most users normally accept the default settings on systems like AdWords and never make changes. So it’s a fair bet that this policy has given Google a massive inventory of ads to push onto mobiles. That sounds great for Google, but whether it is always in the best interests of the advertisers is a different question. Read more

In another validation of the suddenly hot collective buying trend, LivingSocial has landed $25m in Series B funding from a group of investors including US Venture Partners and Steve Case’s Revolution, LLC. But even with new money backing several similar companies, it is still unclear if the latest thing in e-commerce will last for long.

LivingSocial got started as developer of Facebook applications and launched the hugely successful Pick 5 app. But the company seems to have developed a real business with it’s LivingSocial Deals, which offers a deep discount at one restaurant or local business each day to users in a dozen cities. Read more

Sony has every right to feel sore that Nintendo and Microsoft have stolen the limelight from it in adding motion-sensing to games.

Sony had the EyeToy  camera for sensing motion and putting players inside games on the PlayStation 2, long before Microsoft’s forthcoming Project Natal . Its six-axis controller has always had more motion capabilities than the three-axis Wii Remote.

But Sony has failed to market its motion technology to maximum effect and its launch of its Move motion controller for the PlayStation 3 on Wednesday represents it arriving late to the current-generation game and with little new to offer. Read more