The SoLoMo Battle

Facebook has acquired location sharing service Gowalla for an undisclosed sum, CNNMoney stated on 2nd December. Facebook has declined to comment on the deal, but I think the battle for SoLoMo between Facebook and Google has really started.

Most of Gowalla’s employees, including founder Josh Williams, would move to Facebook’s offices in Palo Alto. There the team will work on Facebook’s Timeline feature, which launched at this year’s F8 conference and is gradually rolling out to Facebook’s 800 million members.

Gowalla is an Austin-based company that launched as a location-sharing service back in 2009. But it never got the same sort of traction that New York-based rival Foursquare saw. Today, we can see that the Gowalla app has 10,000 daily active users connected to Facebook againstFoursquare’s 560,000 daily actives.

Facebook also has its location product Places, which it changed a few months ago to scrap the check-in feed from its mobile platform. Instead, Facebook users must add a city location or tag a specific Place in their Wall or Timeline posts.

Here is what I think: Facebook scrapped its product called Places and might now use Gowalla for check-ins and to fuel its product Timeline. So the bigger picture could be: expect to have your local check-ins back in your Facebook Timeline soon. And since Google bought Zagat this year, Google is also working on GEO locations and trying to finally fuel its social search product.  Facebook is heavily investing in its SoLoMo proposition: Social + Local + Mobile. And so is Google. Interesting to see who will win the domain Local Search in the near future.

What do you think?

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~ by digivine on December 9, 2011.

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