Google April 27 agreed to purchase LabPixies in a move to fortify its popular iGoogle personalized homepage. LabPixies makes widgets for gaming, task and other programs users can install on their iGoogle pages with a single click to kill some time. The startup also makes widgets for Apple's iPhone, Google's Android platform and Facebook, among other social platforms. The LabPixies team will be based in Google's Tel Aviv office, helming the company's iGoogle work in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Google April 27 agreed to purchase game software maker LabPixies
move to fortify its popular iGoogle personalized homepage, which now boasts
more than 100,000 gadgets.
LabPixies makes widgets for gaming, task and other smallish
programs, which users can install on their iGoogle pages with a single click to
kill some time.
The startup, which also makes widgets for Apple's iPhone,
Google's Android platform and Facebook, was one of the first developers to
create gadgets for iGoogle, according to iGoogle programmer Don Loeb.
Top LabPixies gadgets for iGoogle include
FloodIt, CalorieCalc, ToDoLists,
Trio, Minesweeper and Trivia.
"Over the years, we worked closely together on a
variety of projects, including the launch of a number of global OpenSocial
based gadgets," Loeb said. "Recently, we decided that we could do
more if we were part of the same team, and as such, we're thrilled to announce
the acquisition of LabPixies."
The LabPixies team will be based in Google's Tel Aviv
office, helming the company's iGoogle work in Europe, the Middle East and
"Working at Google will help us scale to more users
as well as giving our team greater opportunities," the LabPixies team wrote
on its Website.
"Google and LabPixies teams have worked on many projects
together including the launch of global OpenSocial based gadgets. The
acquisition is an opportunity to learn from each other to bring more apps to
users, help developers and improve the overall developer ecosystem."
The part about scale echoes a now-common mantra among
several of Google's recent software acquisitions, small startups that believe a
bigger palette will help them realize their dream, or at least provide them
with a big enough payday so they can afford to leave and start another startup.
Google began its shopping spree last August by bidding
for On2 Technologies, but since then Google has seemed to add a new
company every three weeks.
For those keeping score, that list includes On2, display
ad provider Teracent
, real-time collaboration app maker
, social search engine Aardvark
, mobile mail app maker ReMail
, collaboration software maker DocVerse
, Web photo editor
, video platform maker Episodic
, visual search provider Plink
Google's $750 million blockbuster bid for mobile ad maker
has yet to be approved and may well be struck down by the Federal Trade
Even so, Google has made its point clear; startups who have enjoyed
some success on the Web that can advance Google's strategy across
search, Google Apps, social Web and other Web services may find a new
home at Google.