Google expands with launch of cable and Internet service.
Google has launched its fiber optic cable service in Kansas City, offering a package of television and Internet services. While it will take a while for Google to physically install these services in Kansas City, let alone build them out to other communities, the experiment signals an intention to compete directly with cable TV and Internet service providers.
Media Post News
Mobile advertising figures show banner ads rapidly losing ground to video, rich media.
Mobile advertiser Opera reports that in January 2012, expandable banner ads held a 31% share on its network, compared to 28% for rich media, and 6% for video. By June, expandable banner ads were down to 15%, with the share of rich media rising to 51% and video to 13%.
Mobile ads score big for Google, with over a million advertisers.
As part of Google's strong results for the second quarter of 2012, the company points to growth in mobile advertising. The number of Google mobile advertisers has doubled in less than a year. Google describes mobile CPCs as healthy, comparing the mobile market now to the search market in 1999. As for Google+, more people access it from mobile devices than from desktops.
Internet advertising beats all other media for global ad spending.
According to a Nielsen report on global ad spending, Internet advertising expanded by 12.1% from Q1 2011 to Q1 2012, compared to the total 3.1% increase for all types of media. Spending improved for TV, newspapers, radio, outdoor signage and cinema, while magazine spending dropped. Internet advertising enjoyed growth of more than 30% in the Middle East & Africa market and also Latin America.
Spoken search results sound good at Google conference.
Google has introduced a natural-sounding female voice to provide search results. Voice search on Android handsets could approach the functionality of iPhones, and many are comparing Google's Voice Assistant with Apple's Siri. However, Siri represents artificial intelligence with a voice front end, capable of interaction or dialog with a user. Google offers voice search based on its Knowledge Graph and search index, updating Google Voice Actions with text-to-speech output.
Search Engine Land
Facebook users find, test and say goodbye to "Find Friends Nearby."
A location-based mobile app, Find Friends Nearby, became available this week -- until it was suddenly pulled. Facebook reported that the feature's introduction was just an engineering test, not an official launch. The app apparently began as Friendshake, a way to connect with people in the vicinity, for example, at an event like a conference. The feature listed anyone nearby who was using the app, whether those people were friends or strangers, which raised some privacy questions.
Microsoft throws down the gauntlet with Surface tablet computers.
With its new Surface line of products, Microsoft has braved the competitive tablet market. According to AFP, one model uses Windows RT software for mobile device chips built on ARM technology, and a larger version runs on Windows 8 Pro. Microsoft avoided specifics on pricing and release dates, but a tablet should launch this fall, most likely in conjunction with Windows 8.