Google buys Android

Search giant quietly bought the wireless start-up in July for an undisclosed sum, according to a BusinessWeek report.

Google has reportedly snapped up the mobile start-up Android, based in Palo Alto, Calif.

Typical of Google's acquisition strategy, the search giant quietly bought the wireless start-up in July for an undisclosed sum, according to a report published Wednesday in BusinessWeek Online. Google acknowledged the transaction in the report.

Android operated quietly itself. Little is published on the company's Web site, or in the press. But it's the next generation operation of Andy Rubin, who previously founded mobile-device maker Danger. Android reportedly makes software, or operating systems, for wireless devices that are location-sensitive or personalized for the owner.

Google has offered search services for wireless devices since 2001. But the company has made concerted effort to improve and broaden those applications in the last year as competition for mobile consumers has heightened.

It's likely a ways off, but personalized search for the phone will be a killer app. That is, if people get over the privacy implications. Web surfers have yet to do that online.

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    Stefanie Olsen covers technology and science.

     

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