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Google expands mobile ads test to China, India

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Google has expanded to several additional countries a test to provide ads to mobile devices, as the search engine giant pushes into this uncharted territory and attempts to extend its vibrant advertising business into the realm of cellphones.

The test, which began in August, was available in the U.S., the U.K., Germany and Japan, and now it has been extended to France, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, China, Ireland, India and Australia, a Google spokeswoman said.

These text-based ads appear along with search results delivered to mobile devices, and they contain either a link to a mobile website or a phone number which users can click on to generate a call. In the U.S., companies can choose specific carriers for their ads.

Google’s rivals, like Yahoo, are busy launching mobile ad programs because they consider this a new frontier in online advertising, as more people worldwide access websites and Internet services from their cell phones.

More information about Google’s mobile ads program can be found at the Google website.

Meanwhile, a Google employee disclosed in his personal blog on Tuesday that the company has begun adding click-to-call functionality to U.S. business listings that appear on Google Maps.

Users who click on the “call” link will be asked to enter their phone number and Google will initiate the call with the business in question. The service is free to Maps users.

Justin Uberti, who joined Google last month after 10 years at AOL, wrote in his blog: “No microphone, no software needed: it uses your existing phone. Your phone number will also be saved so that you won’t need to enter it again the next time.”

Google, which has made no secret about its efforts in the click-to-call ad format, including a collaboration with eBay, didn’t reply to a request for comment regarding Uberti’s blog post.

Juan Carlos Perez

05:40 PM JMLH • Permalink
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