Google Buys Mobile Social Network Zingku
When I first read that Google had bought Zingku, I asked myself, what does Google want with a cartoon penguin? I mean, he’s cute and all, but how does that fit…huh?…that’s Pingu?…Zingku is a mobile social network, you say?…ok, never mind.
Ok, so Google has acquired another mobile social network–they previously bought dodgeball which is in mothballs right now.
What does Zingku do?
Our service is designed from the mobile phone, outward, allowing you to create and exchange things of interest ranging from invitations to “mobile flyers” with friends in a trusted manner. On the mobile phone, Zingku uses standard text messaging and picture messaging features that come with every phone. On the web, our service uses your standard web browser and instant messenger. There is nothing to install.
With Zingku, things you wish to promote or share, can easily be created and fetched via mobile, instant messenger, and web browser. Our service integrates your mobile phone with a personalized web site so that you can easily move (zing) things back and forth between the web and and your mobile as well as powerfully connect with friends and optionally their friends.
Yeah, that sounds cute, but what does it do for Google?
Zingku services are also being made available to “merchants” who wish to reach an audience. Merchants create “mobile flyers” and then publish/email a “zing-code” to their customers who opt to pull the flyer to their mobile phone. The customer can then zing it to those friends who they think may be interested. Our mobile flyers are interactive, can take a recipient through a mobile text and picture messaging journey. As such, 18 – 28 year olds, who have tuned out of email and are tuned in into their mobile, respond far more actively than traditional marketing media.
Ah, so it’s going to help Google create AdWords “flyers” that can be shared among a user’s network of friends. Pretty cool (for Google, that is).
Anyway, don’t try and sign-up as Google has frozen new sign-ups to the service while it decides if it’s going to continue you the service or let it sit on the shelf for a bit.