Google Expanding Mobile AdWords Trial to Eight New Countries
Google will be expanding its Mobile AdWords trial to eight new countries, a Google representative said today at the ThinkEquity Partners Media Convergence Summit.
John Hanke, product director for Google Maps and Google Earth, did not divulge the names of the new countries. Google is currently testing mobile AdWords in the United States, United Kingdom, Germany and Japan.
"Mobile is very important to us," Hanke said, "We think in many parts of the world, particulary in Asia Pacific and Latin America, mobile is going to be the dominant way people will interact with our services. If we want people to use our services, we have to be good at mobile."
Hanke said that Google was concentrating on making mobile apps that would be useful to users but would also help carriers sell handsets and data plans. Hanke said that Google would work to keep its data free of carriers' "walled gardens" of content.
"We think our applications are gonna drive data plans and there's revenue there. At the same time, we don't want to see really high barriers for users for people to get access to those applications that require data. With some of the carriers, it's kind of expensive for people to use it. We'd like to figure out ways to drive that down. Frankly, over the longer term advertising offers us an opportunity to do that. The local advertising market ... is a $100 billion market; a lot of that will transpire on mobile phones."
Google CEO Eric Schmidt said as much at a conference earlier this week, positing that advertising would eventually drive handset costs down to zero.
Hanke said that Google Earth and YouTube were both applications that users wanted mobile versions of. Mobile access, Hanke said, is critical for Google's strategy of storing user's information in the data cloud and providing unversal access to that store.
Google launched a Java-powered Gmail client for mobile apps earlier this month. The company announced Google Maps for Mobile with live traffic data in July.