Google's bid to convince federal regulators that Apple's iAds plan represents healthy competition seems to be paying off.
The New York Times reported Tuesday that the Federal Trade Commission extended the amount of time it needed to review Google's proposed acquisition of AdMob in order to review Apple's plans for mobile advertising. The extension is supposed to last through the end of this week, after which point the agency could finally be ready to make a decision.
It's seemed pretty obvious for months that the FTC was looking for a showdown over Google's bid to purchase AdMob, the leading mobile advertising company purchased by Google for $750 million last year. But Apple's acquisition of Quattro Wireless and subsequent plans to launch its own advertising network for iPhone applications has caused some to wonder--encouraged by Google--whether or not Apple could provide a check on Google's bid to dominate mobile advertising the way it dominates search advertising.
In order to block the deal, the FTC would have to prove that the combination would negatively affect competition in mobile advertising. Google has been preparing for a fight for some time, even launching a Web site to outline its case on the same day it announced plans to acquire AdMob.