Google’s Same-Day Delivery Pilot Goes Bi-Coastal

Google Shopping Express 1 In a sign that Google's pilot program for same day delivery has legs, the program is now available on both coasts. Consumers in Manhattan and the West Los Angeles area can turn to Google to get items from local shops delivered to their doorstep within a matter of hours. The company began testing its same-day delivery program, Google Shopping Express, in the San Francisco Bay area last spring. The program is designed to marry the convenience of online shopping with the instant satisfaction of brick-and-mortar purchasing -- and compete head-to-head with the Amazon Prime delivery service. T [...]

Google Rumored To Be Kicking Off Conversations To Win NFL Sunday Ticket Package

Google Logo Rumors are spreading that Google has started informal discussions with the NFL to buy the rights to the NFL Sunday Ticket package.'s Peter Kafka reports that Google CEO Larry Page and YouTube's head of content Robert Kyncl sat down with NFL commissioner Roger Goodell and other NFL leadership. "The Sunday Ticket package was among the topics of discussion, according to people familiar with the meeting," writes Kafka. DirecTV currently owns the rights to the NFL Sunday package, paying $1 billion a year for the contract. The exclusive deal that DirecTV has with the NFL will co [...]

To Avoid Copyright Liability, Google News Goes Opt-In In Germany

google-legal-law Earlier this year, a new, more restrictive copyright law was passed in Germany that gave publishers near total control over the use of their content (there's no "fair use" doctrine in Germany). It was championed by large magazine publishers and newspapers that believed they were being "disintermediated" by search engines and others that were commercially exploiting their content. Google was a prime target of their complaints and the new law. German publishers had hoped to establish a licensing marketplace for their content. Indeed, when the law passed the European Publishers Council iss [...]

Unboxing Google Engage

GoogleEngage-Edited I’ve got big plans for my agency. Apparently, so does Google. While the agency world’s demise has been the subject of quite a bit of opinion over the years, it seems Google is embracing the fact that advertisers often hire professional services firms to help them -- at least for now. Agency “certification” programs are nothing new in search, and the last time I wrote about them back in 2005, they were overwhelmingly engineered to cater to larger advertisers.  The names and target audiences of ambassador programs have changed over the years, but the goal of increasing stable rev [...]

DoubleClick Unveils New Initiatives To Support Social, Native Ads, Video Asset Management

doubleclick-icon Google will be rolling out a number of new features and tools for DoubleClick this year. DoubleClick's Vice President, Display Advertising, Neal Mohan announced several new DoubleClick initiatives and features in a blog post that coincided with the start of the company's annual thinkDoubleClick event. DoubleClick for Advertisers is getting a revamp and a new name. The newly dubbed DoubleClick Campaign Manager will be released globally in the next several months. This is the largest update to DoubleClick's core ad server since the service launched 15 years ago and "completely re-imagines th [...]

Blurring Online And Offline, Google Tests Same Day Delivery With “Shopping Express”

Google Shopping By some measures, e-commerce is doing very well. This past year, US retail e-commerce hit $186.2 billion, according to comScore. The firm added that Q4 was the first $50 billion quarter, which was also the "ninth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth." However, things are not all smiles and good cheer in e-commerce land. Relatively soon, sales tax for online purchases will be commonplace (as it now is in California), removing one of e-commerce's key advantages over traditional retail. Taxes are coming because e-commerce is now perceived as relatively stable, strong and mature (no l [...]

Google Prepares New Streaming Music Service As Record Industry Slams Company’s Anti-Piracy Efforts

Google music There were several reports from late last week indicating that Google is negotiating with major labels in anticipation of the launch of Spotify-like music streaming service. As part of these negotiations, according to the LA Times, "Google is proposing a premium subscription service" on YouTube that would encompass music videos and perhaps audio-only songs. The suggested launch window is fall 2013. A well-executed streaming capability would potentially threaten smaller services such as Spotify or MOG. Apple is also rumored to be preparing a streaming Internet radio competitor to Pand [...]

Google Introduces Digital Couponing And Loyalty Solution “Zavers”

Zavers Google has tried its hand over the years at couponing and loyalty marketing. It has done so using a number of different approaches: Google Coupons, Google Offers, Google Offer Ads, Google Wallet and the now-defunct Punchd. Some of these programs have been directed toward small businesses and some more broadly to brands and national marketers. Now comes Zavers, a digital couponing and redemption solution for retailers and manufacturers. Zavers is aimed at large brands and national retailers and intended to help them create and distribute coupons and incentives online and streamline redemp [...]

Google Upgrades Wallet And Takes It Into The Cloud

Although in most respects Google Wallet is still waiting for consumer liftoff, that company is taking it into the cloud. Today Google announced that it was adding a number of new features, including the ability to pair the service with any credit or debit card. Having launched in September 2011 with Citi MasterCard exclusively, Google Wallet will now be compatible with any Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover. Credit card numbers can now be entered by consumers online, in Google Wallet (formerly Google Checkout), or the Google Play store. Additional benefits of operating in t [...]

Google’s Acquisition Of Motorola Mobility Closes, What Now?

google-motorola-featured After government approval from China, contingent upon Google's agreement to keep Android "free and open" for at least five years, Motorola Mobility is now part of Google. European and US approvals happened some time ago. The deal is worth $12.5 billion -- Google's largest acquisition by far -- and includes some 17,000 patents that Google can use to defend Android against litigation and threats of litigation from Apple, Microsoft and any others who might go after it. Some have questioned whether the value of those patents justified $12 billion. Yet Google also gains a hardware business that [...]

Google Really Wants Businesses To Mobilize, Offering Free Sites to Small Busineses

Google has been very aggressively promoting mobile website development for enterprises and small businesses. The company launched the portal last year and has been doing a series of webinars on going mobile. Google has also made having a mobile optimized site or landing page part of its ad quality ranking factors. Now it's offering free mobile sites to small businesses for a year. The "DIY" offer is through a partnership with DudaMobile, which enables merchants to build a mobile site very quickly based on a series of templates. DudaMobile's existing basic program is free bu [...]

Apple Using OpenStreetMap With Its Own Tiles Instead Of Google Maps In Select Cases

Screen shot 2012-03-08 at 8.52.08 AM As you may have seen by now there were some new iOS screenshots showing maps that don't look like they are from Google. Below are a couple of the shots in question (via 512Pixels and The Next Web). See update below regarding OpenStreetMap. There was also the discovery of code that suggested these maps were being generated by Apple internally. We reached out to Google for a comment but didn't receive any sort of statement. John Gruber has apparently been given an answer by his sources about what's going on: Gruber says, "What I'm hearing now is that Places still uses Google Maps, [...]

Android Market Becomes “Google Play,” Reflects Google’s Multiplatform Content Aims

google-play-featured Android Market is dead. Long live Google Play! Today, Google announced that it is changing the name of its Android Market to Google Play, a move it hopes better reflects that the marketplace now offers more than apps, with content like books, video and music available even to those who aren't using Android. "This is really an acknowledgement that these experiences are relevant not just for a mobile environment but across the web," said Jamie Rosenberg, Google's director of digital content. Google's March To Selling Content Over the past year or so, Google has been ramping up how i [...]

Foursquare Breaks Up With Google Maps, Is It The Beginning Of A Trend?

foursquare-google-maps-featured For years Google Maps were the standard for publishers and developers wanting to integrate maps into their sites. Google Maps were part of the original "mashup." Google's early API, consumer popularity and easy (read: free) licensing terms fueled rapid adoption of Google Maps by third party publishers and developers. But last November Google announced that it would be charging its heaviest maps users starting January 1, 2012 for map views/impressions over 25,000 per day. Each additional 1,000 page loads would cost $4. Google estimated that roughly 4,000 customers would be affected. Short [...]

Recent Bans Surface AdSense Publishers’ Complaints About Google

google-adsense-logo Two recent cases of AdSense publisher bans highlight publisher discontent about Google's mysterious methods for determining when to ban (and when to reinstate) participants displaying its Content Network ads on their sites. Acme Dropped, Reinstated After Public Attention In the first case, well-respected netizen Jef Poskanzer, who runs the site, was banned from AdSense on January 15. Google's explanation, in a form letter, was that "... we've determined that your AdSense account poses a risk of generating invalid activity. Because we have a responsibility to protect our AdWords adve [...]

Google Confronts More Rogue Behavior In OpenStreetMap “Vandalism” Incident

At the end of last week Google was on the receiving end of accusations that it had scraped a local directory site in Kenya (Mocality) and then perpetrated a scam using that site's name in cold calls to local businesses. Last night new allegations from the people behind Google Maps competitor Open Street Map claimed that one of the same Google IP addresses was responsible for vandalizing OSM data in several locations: [U]sers from Google IP address ranges in India deleting, moving and abusing OSM data including subtle edits like reversing one-way streets. Two OpenStreetMap accounts have been v [...]

Schmidt On CES: “There’s Always Android Products That We Don’t Know About”

Schmidt CES Think Google exercises super-powers over Android? Think again. One of the jobs Googlers are doing this week at the CES is to spot new Android products out in the wilderness. Not to close them down, since Android's free for anyone to use. Just to help catalog the population. "We have a couple of people who are walking the show floor. What's interesting about CES is that there's always Android products that we don't know about, because they don't need to tell us," said Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt, when I spoke with him on Monday. As you'll see in the video below, he seemed pre [...]

Google Triples Its Spending To Keep Default Search Spot In Firefox

google-firefox-logos How important was it to Google to remain the default search engine in Mozilla's Firefox browser? Important enough that Google agreed to pay three times more in this deal than it did in 2010. AllThingsD is reporting that Google's new deal with Mozilla is costing a cool $300 million per year. That's about triple what Google paid in the previous deal: According to Mozilla's 2010 annual report, Google accounted for about 84% of Mozilla's $123 million in revenue, which comes out to about $103 million. Why did Google agree to triple its costs on Firefox when it has Chrome, its own growing web [...]

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