If Google were an adolescent lad, 2007 would mark the year his voice cracked.
Last year, Google remained at the top of its search class. This year, the company tried out for the wireless varsity teams, played hooky with YouTube, and courted cheerleader DoubleClick.
There was a wave of consolidation in the online advertising space, with search companies gobbling up ad firms like crazy. Google started it off by offering $3.1 billion to acquire online ad serving and ad exchange provider DoubleClick in April. The merger was kept in limbo most of the year due to privacy and antitrust concerns voiced by lawmakers, privacy advocates, and rivals like Microsoft.
Last week, however, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission gave its approval for the Google-DoubleClick deal. But the transaction is expected to be a tough sell in Europe, where regulators face an April 2 deadline for deciding.
While trying to become an advertising powerhouse, Google also staked out turf in the mobile and wireless-spectrum areas in the hopes of broadening access to its Internet search and other services.
Following years of "Google Phone" speculation, the company in November finally launched the Android mobile-software platform and the Open Handset Alliance of device makers, carriers, and others who aim to create an ecosystem for next-generation Internet-enabled phones.
Later that month, Google submitted its application to bid on the Federal Communications Commission's auction of the 700MHz band wireless spectrum. Google executives have been mum about their plans for the spectrum should they win, but they have hinted that they would likely partner with a network service provider rather than build out a network on their own.
Google, meanwhile, was sued by Viacom for $1 billion for alleged copyright violations over pirated videos posted to its video-sharing site, YouTube. Seven months later, Google unveiled an antipiracy tool for video that seemed to appease some media companies, but didn't make the Viacom lawsuit go away.
While Google's search market share continued to rise along with its stock price--which has topped $700--No. 2 search engine Yahoo was struggling to redefine itself. Terry Semel stepped down as chief executive in June and Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang replaced him.
Yang's promotion had its drawbacks. He spent his 39th birthday in November getting called a moral pygmy by U.S. lawmakers and being forced to apologize to the families of two Yahoo users who were jailed for 10 years after Yahoo turned over information about them to Chinese authorities. A week later, Yahoo settled a lawsuit on that score and promised to create a humanitarian relief fund to help other political dissidents and their families.
In contrast, at Tech High, Google would definitely be voted "Most Ambitious" and "Most Likely to Succeed."
Media company seeks more than $1 billion in damages, claiming that nearly 160,000 unauthorized clips appear on video-sharing site.
Deal boosts the search giant's banner advertising business, which lagged rival Yahoo's.
In his keynote address at Web 2.0 Expo, CEO Eric Schmidt shows off new Docs & Spreadsheets feature that lets users create presentations.
Spending spree on advertising companies continues, as the software giant issues a rejoinder to Google's plan to purchase DoubleClick.
New street-level view in Google Maps shows panoramas and offers zoom-in feature to read signs.
Terry Semel steps down one week after shareholders blast him over search company's financial performance.
Microsoft and Yahoo are the latest to announce limits on how long they will keep Web search data.
Hitwise says Google has a nearly 64 percent share of the U.S. search market and Nielsen/NetRatings says it has a 54 percent share.
New system uses image recognition to match pirated video with copyrighted clips. But copyright owners must provide reference video.
Borrowing a page from Sun's Java playbook, Google is announcing a way for programmers to build social applications for multiple Web sites at once.
Shares kiss the $700 mark in early morning trading Wednesday, marking a new first for the Internet giant and its soaring stock price.
In much the same way it changed the wired Internet, Google plans to revolutionize the mobile Web through its new open software platform.
Settlement comes week after Congress tell Yahoo's Yang to settle suit filed by journalists after Yahoo provided information to Chinese govt.
If Google wins the 700MHz wireless spectrum auction in January, expect Google-branded phones galore.
In a 4-1 vote, regulators give their blessing to the controversial union, despite outcry from competitors and privacy advocates.
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