Google Pushes Tailored Phones To Win Lucrative Ad Market reports WSJ, in a bid for Google to capture a meaty portion of the mushrooming market for advertisements on cellphones.
"Google has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in the cellphone project, say people who have been briefed on it. It has developed prototype handsets, made overtures to operators such as T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless, and talked over technical specifications with phone manufacturers. It hopes multiple manufacturers will make devices based on its specs and multiple carriers will offer them."
At the D: All Things Digital conference held in May, Google Inc CEO Eric Schmidt's statements showed big interest in the mobile ad business, "What's interesting about the ads in the mobile phone is that they are twice as profitable or more than the nonmobile phone ads because they're more personal."
When WSJ contacted Google, they remained mum on the mobile project but said, "We are partnering with almost all of the carriers and manufacturers to get Google search and other Google applications onto their devices and networks."
"Google has approached several wireless operators in the U.S. and Europe in recent months, including AT&T, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless, a joint venture of Verizon Communications Inc. and Vodafone Group PLC, people familiar with the situation say. T-Mobile USA, a unit of Deutsche Telekom AG, appears to be the furthest along in considering it, these people say. Andy Rubin, who helped design T-Mobile's popular Sidekick phone, now works at Google and is involved in its handset project. Google recently struck a deal with Sprint Nextel Corp. to have a wide array of its services bundled into devices for that carrier's high-speed wireless network based on the nascent WiMax technology. Both companies declined to comment on whether that relationship would extend to offering Google-customized phones on Sprint's existing cellular network."
On the other hand, most mobile networks do not seem to keen on partnering with the search engien behemoth as Verizon Wireless Chief Executive Lowell McAdam said their company has opted out from collaboarting with Google "because of Google's demands to get a large share of search-based ad revenue."
Verizon Wireless Chief Executive Lowell McAdam, "What this really boils down to is a battle for the mobile ad dollar. They want a disproportionate share of the revenue√Ę‚ā¨¬Ě spoke Mr McAdam in a recent interview.
Reuters reported last month that "Google had engaged Taiwan's High Tech Computer Corp to design a Linux software-based phone for launch in the first quarter of 2008."
Not one to go into a project half-heartedly, it seems Google wants to and is preparing to go into the mobile ad business with no shortcomings or loopholes.