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Newspapers? Dying? Television? Might as well die too. New media? That's where future empires will be built.
At least that's what some have been claiming since blogging and 'new media' became a mainstream phenomenon. And to be sure, new media's future does look bright. But is it as bright as many had predicted? Perhaps not.
At one point in the no-so-distant past, Digg was one of the hottest startups on the internet. The Web 2.0 boom was in full swing, and Digg and its founder Kevin Rose were the poster children for the next generation of companies that would ride the wave to fame and fortune.
Digg, of course, rose to popularity by providing a platform that democratized the news. Why rely on editors to determine what's important and what's not?Let the wisdom of the crowd works its magic. It was a simple idea, but a powerful one.
In the tech industry, acquisitions are a fact of life. Big companies look to acquisitions for innovation and talent, and many entrepreneurs hope that their hard work will one day result in their creations being acquired.
When it comes to who is doing the acquiring in 2010, Google is at the head of the pack. In search of technologies and services that compliment its initiatives, and perhaps even the next big thing, the search giant has snapped up 23 companies this year according to CB Insights.
Thanks to the rise of massive social networks, namely Facebook, and a multi-billion dollar virtual currency market, social gaming has become one of the hottest spaces on the consumer internet.
But there's another reason social gaming is so hot: it is putting the 'casual' back into the concept of 'casual gaming'. Through social games like Farmville and Mafia Wars, millions upon millions of non-gamers have become gamers. In the process, social games are potentially reshaping the gaming industry more broadly.
Vertical search is already a big focus in the search market, and Google has its sights set on the skies. And we're not talking about the infamous Google party plane.
Yesterday, Google announced that it is buying flight information software company ITA Software for $700m in cash. ITA Software's technology is widely used by airlines and online travel destinations, and "effortlessly searches – at a billion combinations per query – fares, schedules, and availability." That's why Google was willing to pay big bucks for ITA's technology, which it hopes will enable it to help passengers, airlines and online travel agencies find flights and fares more efficiently.
Groupon may be the 800 pound gorilla in the super-hot group buying space, but its prominent success story, coupled with low barriers to entry, has led to a significant amount of competition, both in Groupon's home market, the United States, and globally.
Not surprisingly, Groupon isn't content with its current U.S. dominance. Investors haven't poured nine-figures into the company so that it can maintain its current market position. So it's rapidly expanding internationally to tap into new sources of growth. But expanding beyond a home market almost always comes with challenges and risks, and that's becoming apparent as Groupon tries to move at breakneck speed into far-flung markets.
It's official: after more than a year of rumors, AOL has finally managed to find a buyer for Bebo, the social networking website it purchased in 2008 for a whopping $850m.
The buyer: financial firm Criterion Capital Partners. The price: word on the street is that it didn't exceed $10m, and may have been as low as $2.5m.
After serving as the subject of rumors, the struggling mobile device company has a new owner, HP. The tech giant paid $1.2bn for the company that invented the smartphone.
Not only was HP not one on the list of companies thought to be looking closely at a Palm acquisition, but one might even question why HP was interested in Palm in the first place. The answer: HP has big goals in the mobile arena, and thinks Palm's technology and expertise can help it achieve them.
In mid-December 2009 the ShareASale affiliate network announced the winners of its 2009 Performance Awards.
The "Exceptional Affiliate" prize went to a promising affiliate
marketing company operating out of Cambridge, Massachusetts:
StyleFeeder. A month later, the site was bought by Time Inc., the largest magazine publisher in the U.S.
Oracle's pending acquisition of Sun Microsystems apparently has some users of MySQL worried. MySQL, of course, is the open source database owned by Sun and offered freely under a GNU General Public License.
It's the most popular open source RDBMS in the world, and is used with popular products like WordPress and on major websites like Facebook and Wikipedia.
Although reports of the acquisition had been circling since last week, Nokia made it official today: it has acquired London and Helsinki-based mobile travel startup Dopplr for an undisclosed amount. According to rumors, the acquisition price is somewhere between €10 million and €15 million.
Dopplr, which currently has seven employees, will join Nokia's services division. According to Nokia's press release, "The acquisition does not change the current Dopplr service which is available at Dopplr.com and on platforms where Dopplr is integrated".
If M&A activity is a good indicator of the health of the economy, there's hope for a recovery, at least in tech. Newsworthy acquisitions are becoming more frequent and yesterday saw a billion-dollar deal with Adobe's announcement that it is purchasing business optimization software provider Omniture.
The deal, which is valued at $1.8bn, was hailed by Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen as "a game changer for both Adobe and our customers". And it better be, as Adobe's offer of $21.50 per share for Omniture stock represents a 24% premium to Omniture's closing price on Tuesday.