Not only is Google being aggressive on talent buys this year, the search engine giant has also been loving shopping for company acquisitions. The latest buy is Clever Sense, the maker of personalized restaurant recommendation apps named Alfred. This location-based local app was made available to Android users last week—which could be a prelude to this deal.
on their website, CEO and CO-Founder of Clever Sense, Babak Pahlavan formally announced the Google acquisition. A portion reads:
“Today, we are excited to join Google and start a new chapter in curating the world around us! Together with the Google team, we will accelerate our efforts toward this shared vision. Google helps local businesses connect with potential customers, and its worldwide presence can bring the value of Clever Sense to a much larger audience.”
Clever Sense: The Bridge Between Online and Offline Worlds
Clever Sense sifts through the real world and curates vast amount of data, both structured and unstructured. It is engineered to connect the online and offline world, collecting bits and pieces of information using time, place and intent. Clever Sense’s bedrock lies with its primary segments: the extraction engine and serendipity engine.
The extraction engine forms the base of the Interest Graph—a social graph that uses social interactions (which Google has plenty, obviously) like check-ins, likes, share and ratings. A more creative mind describes the serendipity engine. It’s personalized and goes beyond the typical recommendations engines by utilizing information on a user’s profile, time stamp, location, intent and other social context. Earlier this year, Google’ s Maria Mayer talked about serendipity and why they want it in Google products.
Clever Sense: Does It Have The Staying Power?
Google has a strong reputation of acquiring something today and shutting it down in no time. The company went on a killing-the-sleeping-assets spree months ago, shutting down several services that include Google Buzz and Google Wave. Considering Google’s own goals with its location based apps like Places, people are already curious if Clever Sense just signed their death certificate, or if it be a prodigy that will propel the organization’s dream of building strong frontiers for Places, Maps and Deals.
Other 2011 Acquisitions
Perhaps the most talked about deal that Google entered this year is with Motorola. However, there are numerous issues and EU regulations that are impeding the closure of this acquisition. Some expect Google to face a fate similar to the AT&T-T-Mobile merger. But the same is true for the AdMeld deal, which has moved forward with the blessing of the US Justice Department. If this deal pushes through, Google will shell out a whopping $400 million to buy the online display advertising firm. Less than a week ago, the music arm and Youtube.com receive a big boost with the purchase of music royalty manager, Rightsflow.
My imagination couldn’t begin to guess how much data Google’s daily traffic produces, but one thing’s for certain–Google’s keen on putting that data to work in every way possible. The Clever Sense purchase is a clear advance not only for curation of large amount of information, but to also leverage language processing and improve data algorithms.