Weekly Digital News Roundup: August 15 – 19
Home is Where the QR Code Is
- QR codes are popping upon everything from magazine ads to bus shelters and slowly but surely, Americans are learning to point and click. ComScore has just posted the results of their June 2011 survery and found that 14 million mobile users in the US have scanned a QR code, which represents about 6.2% of all mobile users.
- 60.5% of the code scanners were men, mostly between 18 – 34 with an income of over $100k. Nearly half found the codes in a print magazine or newspaper, and 35.3% found them through product packaging. Websites (27.4%) and TV (11.7%) also made the list.
- Experts believe that, while there is a long way to go before QR codes become part of the common usage, the fact that people are scanning at home could mean that mobile isn’t just for those on the go – more people are using their cell phone as a substitute computer, which could have a big impact on mobile marketing in the future.
New: “Google Related” Toolbar Shows Google Content As You Surf
- Google has just released a new info discovery tool named Google Related that allows users to find and access content that’s similar to what they’re viewing in their web browser.
- If related material (websites, videos, products for sale, maps, etc.) is available – as determined by the algorithm – it can be viewed in a toolbar found at the bottom of the web browser window. The related material will come from or via a number of Google web sites and properties.
- A plus for the toolbar is that the video content it brings back (via YouTube) can be viewed in a pop-up window attached to the actual Google Related toolbar, eliminating the need to leave the web page and open a new tab or window. In fact, all of the content Google Related provides does not require a new window or tab, streamlining the user’s experience while using the tool.
Consumers More Accepting of Ads in Online Video
- After years of resistance, consumers are coming around to the notion that advertising is a reasonable enough tradeoff for free online video content.
- According to a new report from the video monetization firm FreeWheel, consumers appear willing to sit through more commercials when those sponsor messages are surrounded by long-form programming.
- When users view full episodic content, 94% will watch a standard ad break. On the other hand, video of five minutes or fewer is a less sustainable environment for commercial messaging; viewers of clips will sit through just 59% of the ads.
Google Buys Motorola Mobility for $12.5 Billion
- Google announced Monday morning that it will acquire Motorola Mobility for $12.5 billion. Motorola is one of 39 manufacturers of handsets that use Google’s Android operating system.
- Buying a hardware company is an unusual move for Google; the acquisition, Google said in a statement, “will enable Google to supercharge the Android ecosystem.”
- Google CEO Larry Page stated, “Our acquisition of Motorola will increase competition by strengthening Google’s patent portfolio, which will enable us to better protect Android from anti-competitive threats from Microsoft, Apple, and other companies.” Android will continue to be an open platform, and Motorola will continue to run as a separate business, Page added.