Microsoft will acquire Skype for $8.5 billion in a move that is the biggest acquisition of the company’s history.
“Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer, though, sees the Internet as an essential battleground for Microsoft, a company that still makes the vast bulk of its profits from Windows and Office software systems. Investors have become increasingly concerned about Microsoft’s ability to squeeze continued growth out of those businesses, as rival technologies from Apple Inc., Google and others put more pressure on profits,” the Wall Street Journal reported.
Microsoft today filed a formal complaint in Brussels accusing Google of curating a monopoly of the search market and unfairly promoting their own products. The chief concerns from Microsoft is the monopolization of YouTube indexing, the Android market, and Google advertising.
In Microsoft’s address to the public regarding this issue, “Adding our Voice to Concerns about Search in Europe,” six reasons are outlined:
- Google buys YouTube in 2006 – more restrictions for competition search engines (can only use text links) as the code or back-end is closed off.
- Google blocks Windows phones from YouTube’s metadata.
Harry Shum, Microsoft VP of Search Product Development, is presenting a keynote address at the Fourth ACM International Conference on Web Search and Data Mining in Hong Kong Friday, where he will discuss the role of personal search history as a factor in search results, the conference site reported.
Shum will explain the changes being made at Bing and how the engine is using a “Dialog Model that consists of three building blocks: an indexing system that comprehensively collects information from the web and systematically harvests knowledge, an intent model that statistically infers user intent and predicts next action, and an interaction model that elicits user intent through mathematically optimized presentations of web information and domain knowledge that matches user needs.”
While AOL has a 5 year deal to use Google for their search results, it seems they may be using Microsoft for their content SEO, according to their recently leaked Master Plan. The plan that Business Insider published shows AOL plans to use “SEO Checker” for optimizing their content.
However, the motives and methods Microsoft is using for this could use a little examination. Is it a complicated process that may pass government muster but be a little too complicated for users to engage, or an alternative to the registry?
The option is not default, and the fact you opt in, as opposed to opt out, could be confusing at first. After all, if tracking on is the default – then an opt in could be misleading.
An overview of some of today’s search, ad, tech news
Adobe has filed for a patent that would enable search engines to crawl rich media format through an annotation-based system.
“According to embodiments of the invention, a developer annotates portions of the procedural code of a rich Internet application to facilitate exposing particular content to a search engine,” the patent filing reads. The patent would make Apple’s war against flash technology more difficult.
AOL is currently gauging the offers of several companies to power its search as its $700 million-a-year deal with Google is set to expire in December. Whether it renews its agreement with Google or switches to another search company, AOL is likely to sign in its partner for the few years to come by September, according to various reports.
As Yahoo and Bing progress on the Search Alliance, Yahoo said it is live testing results of Microsoft organic and paid search on its platform this month. In its update, Yahoo also gave a few other prospective dates and steps. Read on.
Yahoo said the testing volumes this month will fluctuate although those for paid search “in particular [will be] kept low enough to help minimize any potential impact to your account.” Full transition is still slated for the third quarter but Yahoo indicated that the two involved companies may elect to delay it until next year, should they “conclude that it would improve the overall experience.”
An overview of some of today’s ad/tech news.
Google is in the news again.
The search behemoth said in a blog post it has launched its Google Fiber for Communities website dedicated to educate and inform people about fiber networks as well as “keep up-to-date” interested communities on the Google Fiber project. Initially announced in February. The plan for Google Fiber was to provide low-cost ultra high-speed broadband access “to at least 50,000 and potentially up to 500,000 people,” starting with a few locations across the U.S. In the end, as 1 100 communities and 200 000 individuals have already expressed interested in the trial, Google is brushing up its PR by launching the website first and even putting together a “Thank you” video for the prospective users.
An overview of some of today’s ad/tech news
Twitter’s SocialAds Network
Twitter is launching SocialAds, a video ad network forked out of its TwitVid. SocialAds allows you to buy your followers and re-tweets (RT) but also provides social analytics. This could be the explanation of Twitter’s simultaneous announcements of its Smallthought acquisition and URL shortener launch as well as rumored trial of a “You Both Follow” feature. According to MediaPost, the pricing model is that of price-per-action, meaning that impressions that do not result in actions won’t be charged for. “Bidding begins at one dollar per follower and seventy-five cents per retweet, with higher bids receiving better placement on ad units,” the report said, noting that SocialAds doesn’t require viewers to retweet or follow brands. It is understood that a private alpha testing yielded over 400 followers to one participant in less than an hour, with 2% of users who “were shown an ad followed a brand.”