Google and the U.S. government are headed for a legal showdown, but on different sides of the courtroom than one might expect.
Eric Goldman, a law professor with Santa Clara University who closely follows the tech industry, spotted a lawsuit filed by Google against the federal government claiming that the U.S. Department of the Interior did not properly evaluate Google Apps when choosing a new Web-based document system. Google alleges that because the Interior Department specified that the system needed to be part of Microsoft's Business Productivity Online Suite, Google Apps never had a chance despite repeated … Read more
Google's 2010 acquisition-spending spree has so far involved 40 companies and a total of $1.6 billion, the company revealed today.
It's been a busy year for the men and women of Google's mergers-and-acquisitions team, closing an average of 4.4 deals a month, according to Google's quarterly report filed with the U.s. Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday. The top three deals involved AdMob, at a final price of $681 million, Slide, at a final price of $179 million, and On2 Technologies, at a final price of $123 million.
Google will take another swing at the Yellow Pages today, integrating local business listings directly into search results.
The company is set to launch Google Place Search as a standalone search option, much the same way Google users can search for images, news, or products. It will bring the Google Places listings that business owners can claim into the main search results pages, rather than confining them to searches done within Google Maps as was the case prior to today.
For now, anyway, Google TV won't tell anybody about your tendency to flip back and forth between infomercials unless you agree to share.
There is a catch for Google TV customers of companies like Dish Network, which has a special partnership with Google that unlocks additional features. Users will have to agree to share data about their viewing habits collected by Dish Network with Google to take advantage of those enhancements, such as the ability to search your Dish Network DVR from inside Google TV. Google also said that other television providers "typically do collect user data relating to channels tuned and content viewed through their services," but that's done separately from Google TV.
Google also said it has disabled the part of Google Chrome on the Google TV software that allows users to share their location. It also reserved the right to allow users to share their location in the future but promised to provide options to disable that feature should Google decide to push it live.… Read more
Google has been targeted in a class-action lawsuit that accuses the company of violating user privacy by passing along search queries in referral links.
The suit, filed yesterday in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, argues that Google's practice of including search terms in the URL for search-results pages violates user privacy when that URL is passed onto the publisher of the Web site clicked on by a Google user. For example, when a Google user searches for "sushi restaurants in San Francisco," Google generates a search results page with a URL along … Read more
Google reached a significant milestone for its Android mobile operating system today: 100,000 applications are available in the Android Market.
The company announced the news in a post to its Android Developer Twitter account, nearly two years to the day since the Android Market formally opened for business. An unofficial estimate of Android applications by AndroLib had pegged the number at 50,000 in April, but it's not clear how accurate that was, as AndroLib currently predicts that 150,000 applications are available in the market.
Google is still well behind Apple when it comes to mobile applications, … Read more
Google TV has the network television industry's attention.
Certain television shows on the Web sites of broadcast networks CBS and ABC are currently being blocked when Google TV users try to access those sites. The Wall Street Journal also reported that NBC confirmed it was blocking streams to Google TV users, although CNET was able to view shows on NBC.com using Google TV. (CBS.com is published by CBS Interactive, which also publishes CNET.)
The decision to block the programs only seems to affect full-length episodes available on the Web sites of those companies, and it began in … Read more
The first town on Google's list to receive a fiber broadband network is a very familiar one to the company's co-founders.
Stanford is the first area Google has picked to get a high-speed broadband network, it announced today. The network, which could deliver speeds up to 1 gigabit a second, will be built for residents of Stanford's Residential Subdivision, an area adjacent to the California institution where members of the university faculty and staff live. Construction is expected to begin in early 2011, Google said.
Google stressed that this is not, however, the first town to receive … Read more
Usually when you order a Double Irish you wind up with a healthy slug of Jameson, not a complicated tax-reduction scheme on the Emerald Isle.
But turns out Google and many other companies are taking advantage of legal tax maneuvers to dramatically reduce the amount of taxes they have to pay on money earned outside the U.S., according to a report today from Bloomberg Businessweek. The report said Google has employed the "Double Irish" technique with such aplomb as to lower the tax rate it pays on income generated outside the U.S. to 2.4 percent, … Read more