An interesting move from Google, even though Yahoo tried doing this a bit and then backed off it: WSJ says Google is working on a hybrid mobile content search service that will help consumers find and purchase mobile content such as ringtones and games…this is separate from its pure mobile search efforts that it has been working on and deploying over the last few years.
Among the plans: users would search for a piece of content and would get back a list of companies that provide it, with links. Later one Google would charge for premium placement. In some senses this is similar to Google’s effort in music industry, where if users search for an artist on the service, it comes back with options to buy songs from various stores, among other results. Not sure if this music directory service has been a huge hit…probably not.
The story says Google has been working with content companies on this for months now, but the project has been delayed due to technical difficulties (read: porting it to all kinds of devices, I presume), and there is no clear timeline on a launch. Sounds like one of those side project Google allows its employees to work on. More when we find out more.