Google’s AdMob division collects a ton of data on the general public’s web surfing habits, but recently released statistics on tablet usage might actually surprise you. According to a recent survey more than 28 percent of all respondents said that a tablet is their primary computer. As technology enthusiasts that admission should send chills up your spine on the future of computing in general, and points out just how little of a computer’s full potential is utilized by the vast majority of users.
We have all heard the rough details of the Google AdMob buy. The deal was worth $750 million in cash and stock, but we had no idea how much of each was involved. Well, thanks to some SEC paperwork Google has filed, we finally know. It turns out El Goog used $530 million in stock for the deal. Most of the remainder, about $220 million, would have been cash.
We find this breakdown interesting. Google has more than enough cash reserves to have paid for the whole thing in cash. Google is currently way into the black with over $26 billion in cash. The AdMob folks must feel pretty confident that Google's stock will continue to increase in value. With the way the search giant is attacking new markets, we'd probably say that's a safe bet.
It's taken over six months, but Google today announced they have completed their acquisition of mobile advertiser AdMob. The deal was in doubt because of a Federal Trade Commission investigation. Just last week, the FTC finally said the deal could go through citing Apple's recently announced iAd platform. It's clear Google is looking to put AdMob to work on all mobile platforms. "We believe that mobile advertising can play a significant role in every single marketing campaign. We’re passionate about the unlimited possibilities in this space,” said Google's Susan Wojcicki.
Apple was in discussions with AdMob when Google swooped in and paid $750 million for the mobile advertising powerhouse. It originally looked like Google might end up with egg on its face as the FTC started making noises about antitrust concerns. Now all is well in the Google-verse, and you can keep enjoying those annoying ads on your phone. Do you think the FTC gave the deal enough scrutiny?
The FTC appears to be preparing to officially challenge Google's acquisition of AdMob on anti-trust grounds. Google has long insisted that the deal will not hinder competition. Sources say the FTC has asked AdMob's competitors to testify about the possible effect on the mobile advertizing industry should the deal go through.
Google announced the deal in November of last year, and the FTC took immediate interest. The Big G stated in December that the FTC was investigating the matter. In a statement to the Wall Street Journal, Google said, " Mobile-app advertising is less than two years old; there are more than a dozen mobile-ad networks." Google may have reason to worry as Apple is rumored to be gearing up for an entry inot the mobile ad space.
Google is still framing the situation with the FTC as a discussion, and not an adversarial legal battle. They are treading lightly hoping to get the deal approved, but all signs point to problems. Do you think the FTC has reason to fear a Google/AdMob deal?
App developers take note - smartphones are popular. Crazy popular. According to the latest numbers from mobile advertising firm AdMob, smartphone traffic is up 193 percent year over year in absolute terms.
As far as AdMob's traffic goes, Apple's iPhone OS rules the mobile roost with exactly half of the mobile OS market share. Android comes in second with a 24 percent slice of the market pie, while Symbian takes third place with 18 percent. A distant fourth is RIM with 4 percent, while Windows Mobile OS accounts for 2 percent, as do all other mobile OSes.
If that seems off to you, that's because it is.
"AdMob does not claim that this information will be necessarily representative of the mobile Web as a whole or of any particular country-market. AdMob's traffic is driven by publisher relationships and may be influenced accordingly," the ad firm states in a disclaimer.
Still, no matter how it's distributed, the bigger point is that not only is the smartphone market booming, but it's still growing at an enormous rate.
Just last week we heard that the FTC was increasing scrutiny of the Google AdMob deal, and now two prominent consumer groups are getting into the mix. Both Consumer Watchdog and Center for Digital Democracy have asked the FTC to block the deal on anti-trust and data privacy grounds. They claim that the acquisition would lessen competition and harm consumers.
The groups took issue with the amount of data Google would have on consumer behavior if the deal were to go through. Though, Google may already have enough of this sort of data. This may be one of those times when Google wants a company for what they do, not just what they know about us. But these sorts of complaints tend to play well at the FTC.
Google offered a steep $750 million for AdMob, which is expected to reach $100 million in revenue in the next three years. Many have speculated that a Google-backed AdMob could essentially wipe out competitors in the mobile advertising space. Does the acquisition concern you? Google does come right out and say they’re not evil, right?
Google, which already has a pretty substantial presence in advertising on the Internet, is seeking to extend its reach with the acquisition of AdMob, a mobile advertising start-up. A sign that the purchase may be raising antitrust concerns: the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which must first bestow its blessing on the purchase, is asking for additional information from Google.
Google’s Public Policy Blog reports: “This week we received what's called a "second request," which means that the FTC is asking for more information so that they can continue to review the deal.” Google’s not necessarily surprised by the request, because it knows “that closer scrutiny has been one consequence of Google's success.”
Google is still positive that the FTC will allow the planned purchase to be completed. Antitrust expert and Harvard law professor Andrew I. Gavil isn’t so sure. He believes the second request is not good news for Google. He points out that with a new set of FTC commissioners and a new administration, acquisitions such as this will get a more careful vetting.
Google's deal for AdMob isn't yet dead, but it is a bit further away from living than it was yesterday.
AdMob was started in 2006 by Omar Hamoui, and has grown into a major player in mobile advertising. Google points out that the mobile world is becoming as increasingly important part of our daily lives. As such, Google would like to advertise to us in that part of our lives.
Google said in a blog post that app developers will enjoy better monetization of their content because of this deal. They also promise advertisers a more engaged audience. Finally, Google says we can all enjoy the benefits of better mobile ads delivering more useful information, because who doesn’t like ads?