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Yahoo and Google Unwire

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Christian Lindholm, the father of Lifeblog software and Navikey UI leaves Nokia . A few weeks later Lindholm joins Yahoo. A few months later WSJ publishes plans of Yahoo teaming up with SBC and Cingular of joining a co-branded phone made by Nokia. WSJ calls this move “launch of services for advanced cellphone networks.” The cellphone will play digital music, and will have a 1.3 megapixel camera, and be able to do other stuff like TV. (Sounds like 6682, doesn’t it!) I am guessing this is Cingular looking for content for its soon to be launched HSDPA network.

To sum it up: this is an announcement of an anti-MVNO; a phone that is most likely to have an interface tied specifically to Yahoo services like email and search; and it will be a device that hawks Yahoo services. With US wireless penetration hitting 61.7% and more focussed MVNOs like Helio, Amp’d and ESPN Phone coming to market, I wonder how much opportunity there is for Yahoo in this space.

In sharp contrast to Yahoo, Google is going to launch a piece of software that can be downloaded over-the-air on most phones that support Java. The software will be a Google Local application, which will allow users to conduct searches for local services and see them on a map. I do find it interesting the divergent strategies of the two fierce competitors. Yahoo is in bed with the carriers, while Google is betting on neutral networks. I will write more on this later!

PS: Don’t worry, you won’t see the phone till next year. Yahoo just likes to announce ahead of time, it seems ;-). Also, just wondering if this is a tactical admission by the carriers that they can’t do software? Just Kidding! Photo via Vinu’s Flickr Stream!

11 Responses to “Yahoo and Google Unwire”

  1. Every move Yahoo makes seems to ensure Google’s continued dominance. Maybe it’s just the geek in me, but I enjoy Google’s pure vision of the web over Yahoo’s jumbled marketing and lack of clear vision.

  2. Jesse Kopelman

    This seems in line with Tahoo’s linkup with TiVo. I still can’t figure out how a tiny company like Danger can make their own phone but Yahoo and Apple have to find partners. Hell, RIM was also tiny when the first Blackberries came out. As Stephen Colbert would say, this is an industry in need of BALLS!

  3. Om, I just downloaded a java ME version of google maps or local onto my cell phone Sprint’s LG PM325. here are some screenshots – pretty cool. They have done a good job of the interface! I especially like the part of clicking on the map to get the address.

    Just quit working for a company which made traffic maps for ur phone. I should tell you this much that google has cracked the UI completely this time. And I am sure – they can hope to generate some revenue here. Or open up the market and bring the prices for location based services – crashing down to a big ‘zero’!!!

    Imagine all the mash ups now onto your phone! housing maps on your phone! now, thats neat next time you go around searching for an apt in the bayarea atleast!! Its time to wake up everyone … this is the real Web 2.0 convergence of information to your phone is a simple and apt way …

    my flickr set: