TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Cellular Carriers Work to Outdo Google, Yahoo

Cellular Carriers Work to Outdo Google, Yahoo

Monty Solomon (
Thu, 27 Jul 2006 16:28:34 -0400

By Amol Sharma
The Wall Street Journal

Envisioning a lucrative wireless search and advertising market, U.S.
cellphone companies are shying away from deals with Internet giants
such as Google Inc. and Yahoo Inc. in favor of partnerships with small
start-ups they can more easily control.

Google, Yahoo and other Internet companies are targeting wireless
search as a major new growth area as cellphone use proliferates
globally. They see billions of dollars in potential revenue from
selling advertising that is linked to searches for ringtones, games,
local listings and mobile Web content.

The search giants have had some success overseas, but they have still
had difficulty penetrating the large U.S. carriers, which ultimately
control access to the nation's nearly 217 million cellular

Large phone companies, including Verizon Communications Inc. and AT&T
Inc., never really profited from the explosion of search and
advertising on the Internet. Now wireless operators like Verizon
Wireless and Cingular Wireless, which are partly owned by those same
phone giants, don't want to make the same mistake.

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