Google gets serious about mobile search

Search giant Google is developing a new mobile search service to aid consumers seeking to purchase ringtones, games and related premium content. The Wall Street Journal, citing sources familiar with the project, reports Google will offer consumers lists of providers selling the content they seek--in time, the company will begin charging content firms for placement in its search results, an approach mirroring the sponsored links Google currently offers on traditional Web searches.  

According to the WSJ, Google has been working for months with providers to index their content holdings for mobile search optimization. Insiders say the initiative has suffered a series of technological setbacks, with an official commercial launch date currently uncertain. Google also is said to be mulling a social networking service enabling its Gmail users to exchange content.

The content search engine heralds Google's latest move into the mobile arena. The company recently launched trials of a pay-per-click mobile advertising platform similar to its AdSense web service, while last month, its YouTube video-sharing unit announced an agreement to wirelessly stream clips to Apple's new iPhone device. Google has also hinted at additional mobile applications as well as a mobile software development platform.

For more on Google's mobile content search push:
- read this Wall Street Journal article

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