Mobile Ad Push
According to Weide, Yahoo bests Google in mobile Internet usership, 29 percent to 24 percent. Add to that Microsoft's slight mobile audience, and
sees Microsoft as the top penetrator with a third of mobile usership.
The usership won't definitively translate to mobile ad sales, but should Microsoft successfully integrate and nurture Yahoo's mobile ad assets, the software maker will have a real weapon with which to attack Google.
The deal makes the mobile ad market all the more important. Whoever wins could dominate in advertising because consumers will ultimately access their various social networks from their iPhones and Google phones. For five reasons Yahoo should/shouldn't take Microsoft up on its offer, click here. Ironically, Microsoft's bid, an astounding 62 percent premium over Yahoo's market value, came a day after Google reported fourth-quarter profit of 17 percent, considerably lower than the 46 percent profit boost in the third quarter. Payouts to underperforming social networking sites weighed on Google's numbers. But revenue still rose 51 percent from a year earlier, showing that the company is still enjoying billions of ad clicks. Once Google's partners figure out how to monetize their platforms properly, activities around MySpace and other social sites could boost Google's ad revenue. Microsoft will have to be able to comfortably shoehorn itself into this market. Net-net, the deal is about Microsoft buying communities of users, millions of whom use Yahoo Mail, and other Internet-based software services, such as Flickr and del.icio.us.
That said, Google isn't standing still. Its Android mobile operating system software might be a bit slow out of the gate, but rumors persist that Google is working hard (allegedly, with Dell) to bring a mobile phone to market.