Mike Thoene

Search Engines

Microsoft and Yahoo are combining! The deal has been approved

by on Feb.18, 2010, under Microsoft, Search Engines

The European Commission and US Department of Justice have both approved a Microsoft and Yahoo deal that will see the software giant acquire the internet search and search advertising businesses of Yahoo.

In a statement on Thursday, the European Commission (EC) concluded that the market shares of both Microsoft and Yahoo were limited. “In the EEA, Microsoft’s and Yahoo’s activities in internet search and online search advertising are very limited with combined market shares generally below 10%. Google, by contrast, generally enjoys market shares above 90%” said an EC spokesperson.

“Implementation of the deal is expected to begin in the coming days and will involve transitioning Yahoo!’s algorithmic and paid search platforms to Microsoft, with Yahoo! becoming the exclusive relationship sales force for both companies’ premium search advertisers globally” said both companies in a joint statement.

Microsoft and Yahoo both announced the deal in July 2009, seeking closure and approval for the deal in early 2010. In the coming months, Yahoo! search results will be provided and branded with Bing, “powered by Bing” will likely begin to appear. The term of the agreement is 10 years but each company will maintain its own separate display advertising business and sales force. Rumors that the company would receive European approval circulated last week and many analysts forecast Thursday as the approval date.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer was upbeat about the deal approval. “Although we are just at the beginning of this process, we have reached an exciting milestone,” Ballmer said. “I believe that together, Microsoft and Yahoo! will promote more choice, better value and greater innovation to our customers as well as to advertisers and publishers.”

Yahoo provided additional information about the coming integration. In a blog posting, Shashi Seth, Senior VP of Yahoo’s Search Products confirmed that basic search listings and ads will be provided by Microsoft. “Yahoo! will continue to enhance the search result listings as we do for people today” he said.

Seth also confirmed Yahoo will create ways to find things faster using Search Assist technology and weaving search more deeply into other Yahoo products. Yahoo also said it would allow users to explore search results better by providing otpions for organizing search results pages or by showing users interesting search topics based on search results. Productivity apps and other tools for search improvements are also expected to be in the works.

Both companies also launched searchalliance.com where they will detail their progress and provide updates for partners and Yahoo! users in the near future.

The Source? Neowin.

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Well lookie here! The Droid can translate text.. with pictures!

by on Feb.16, 2010, under Google, Search Engines

Apparently Google has been in the process of making some wicked software that can translate text from pictures that you take with your cell phone into different languages! Sadly it can’t translate spoken words, but it can translate something from say.. a German dinner menu. The demonstration by Google translated the text: “Fruhlingssalat mit Wildkrautern” to “Spring salad with wild herbs.”  The demonstration took a photo of a German dinner menu, sending back the translation, using an Android based phone. (continue reading…)

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Apple vs Google, This time it's hitting the iPhone

by on Jan.20, 2010, under Apple, Google, Mobile, Search Engines

According to Businessweek, hell is going to freeze over. The Apple iPhone might be losing it’s default browser of Google to Bing, and Apple said that hell will have to freeze over before Apple partners with Microsoft at all.

It’s a pretty risky deal, I personally hope that they still allow Google to be chosen as a serach engine on the iPhone, but I don’t thinkg the rivalry will go quite that far, at least I certainitly hope not.

Microsoft and apple are also rivals, but it doesn’t mean that they can’t work together or make products for one anther’s operating systems. At least Microsoft does, with it’s Office application like Word and PowerPoint. I don’t see many Apple applications ported over to PC.. but I guess with Apple’s low market share it seems to be justified.

“Apple and Google know the other is their primary enemy,” says one of the people, who’s familiar with Apple’s thinking. “Microsoft is now a pawn in that battle.”

If these battles are successful, it could also mean that Bing could eventually replace Google as the default search engine for Apple’s desktop version of Safari as well.

With Google’s entry into the mobile phone business as well as Apple’s recent acquisition of a mobile ad company, the two businesses have encroached on each other’s territories. Apple has even been said to be working on distancing itself from Google’s Maps data in the iPhone, which will be amazingly difficult for the iPhone to replace. Because of recent reports of Apple having billions of dollars to toy with, I really don’t see that part to be much of a problem, I am sure they can qcuire a company that can make a competing map application without much of a problem.

The future will definitely be different, especially in a week with the hundreds of reports of the new Apple product being an “iPad” or an “Apple Tablet” or whatever they may call it. We’ll have to see, and I can’t wait open my eyes!

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