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Google buys Jaiku, a software application for mobile phones

It allows users to post and browse short messages

By Linda Rosencrance
October 9, 2007 12:00 PM ET

Computerworld - Google Inc. said today that it has acquired Jaiku Ltd., which offers a product called Jaiku Mobile, a software application for mobile phones that enables users to post and browse short messages called "jaikus."

Jaiku users can also share their activities via the Web or instant messaging system, according to the company.

The acquisition is one in a series of moves by Google to give users more services through mobile phones.

"Technology has made staying in touch with your friends and family both easier and harder: living a fast-paced, on-the-go lifestyle is easier (and a lot of fun), but it's more difficult to keep track of everyone when they're running around at warp speed," Google Product Manager Tony Hsieh wrote in a blog. "That's why we're excited to announce that we've acquired Jaiku, a company that's been hard at work developing useful and innovative applications for staying in touch with the people you care about most -- regardless of whether you're at a computer or on a mobile phone."

Hsieh said current Jaiku users can still use the service as they have been using it. He said new users will be able to sign up for an invitation when Google is ready to expand the service.

According to Hsieh, Google plans to use the ideas and technology behind Jaiku to make "compelling and useful products," adding that the company doesn't have any specific plans to announce right now.

"We're excited about helping drive the next round of developments in Web and mobile technology," Hsieh wrote in the blog. "We... are looking forward to working [with Jaiku] on new and innovative ways of keeping people connected."

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