A summary of search related news items that occurred this week including Microsoft completes acquisition of aQuantive, AOL Mobile Search launches with Moviefone, MapQuest and CityGuide, Yahoo! Local gets a new makeover, a new service called TwitKu combines Twitter and Jaiku into one interface, and finally, American Airlines is the latest to file suit against Google over trademarks used to trigger AdWords ads.
- Microsoft Completes Acquisition of aQuantive – Greg Sterling reports that Microsoft has completed their acquisition of aQuantive. They now join the other three major search engines in the fact that they all own search marketing firms. In Microsoft’s case, they acquire search marketing firm Avenue A | Razorfish in the deal. What each engine plans to do with the SEM firms they now own due to larger acquisitions has yet to be seen. One thing is for certain and that is each search engine will have to be careful that their ownership of search marketing agencies does not conflict with the fact that they all serve up editorial search results. In my mind, the only way to effectively do this is to sell or spin off the SEM business units each engine has acquired. Whether that will become a reality or not, we will just have to wait and see.
- AOL Mobile Search Launches - AOL has taken advantage of some of their own properties, including them in a beta version of AOL Mobile Search that they just released. Those properties include Moviefone (which I use all the time), MapQuest (didn’t know they owned this one) and AOL CityGuide. The actual search functionality is powered by Google just as it is on the Internet. The new portal is reportedly only available now for Windows based mobile phones with plans to broaden the offering in the near future. Loren Baker and Greg Sterling have more on the subject.
- Yahoo! Local Gets a Makeover - Greg Sterling has a look at Yahoo! Local’s new makeover which features a bolder graphical look that pushes community content even more front and center. Maps are still featured, but not as a central metaphor or visual element and much more in a functional way. Greg also points out that there is better integration of other Yahoo content and properties such as Groups and Upcoming Events. Several screenshots are included in his review.
- TwitKu Combines Twitter And Jaiku Into a Single Interface - TechCrunch reports that a new site called TwitKu combines the service of Twitter and Jaiku into one single interface. Once you log in to each service through the TwitKu interface, you are presented with side by side layout of the latest Twitter and Jaiku postings. There is even a module that allows you to post to one or both of the services. I like it, not that I want to start posting duplicate stuff, however it will make things like Digg requests and the like a bit easier. Now if they can add Pownce and Yappd, but that won’t happen until those two services release APIs which they have yet to do.
- American Airlines Files Suit Against Google Over Keyword Ads - This is certainly not been the first lawsuit Google has faced over trademarks used to trigger AdWords but according to Eric Goldman, it could be one of the most costly. He states, “American Airlines apparently decided it was worth going to war over this issue–and is prepared to pay the big bucks to litigate this case accordingly. If this lawsuit runs its course, I expect this to be a hard-fought and expensive lawsuit.” Eric has additional details and the filed complaint is also available as a PDF download (4.4MB file).