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Smartphones Boost Google Mobile Search

The explosion in global smartphone usage over the last two years is now really starting to show in Web search revenues for Google (Nasdaq: GOOG).

Google reported revenues of $5.94 billion yesterday for its third quarter, an increase of 7 percent compared to $5.54 billion in the same period last year. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company revealed on its third-quarter earnings call that mobile search revenues were up 30 percent from the previous quarter, without putting specific dollar amounts on the figure.

"We don't really comment specifically on the monetization statistics of mobile versus desktop," Google SVP of product management, Jonathan Rosenberg, said on the call.

"Search traffic volume is being very nicely driven on mobile by smartphone adoption. In some markets, like in Japan, mobile searches are growing twice as fast as desktop searches over the last year or so," he said.

Google itself is helping to stimulate that growth with the open-source Android operating system. There could be as many as 18 devices available using the mobile code by early 2010. (See Verizon to Have 3 Android Devices by Early 2010.) Financial analysts Jefferies & Co. Inc. are predicting that Google's mobile search revenues will top $500 million by 2011. (See Analyst: Google Mobile Search to Top $500M by 2011.)

— Dan Jones, Site Editor, Unstrung

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