There's been a recent blitz of words about new search and content initiatives coming from the good folks at Google (Nasdaq: GOOG ) . As per usual, these are meant to make the site stickier and stickier, but they also serve the dual purpose of upping the ante for some of Google's most stringent Internet rivals.
Yesterday, folks at CNET dug up word from Google's blog that the search giant will start offering real-time stock quotes through its site. Most individual investors who use the Internet for financial research know that free stock quotes are generally delayed by 20 minutes.
As much as I can appreciate the offer of free, real-time stock quotes, when it comes to stock-related information, it's going to be hard to displace Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO ) Finance's hub, which comes complete with aggregated news, stock price history, charts, and statistics, to name just a few features in a hub-like atmosphere. At the moment, Yahoo! does allow users to access real-time ECN quotes, although getting streaming real-time quotes requires a premium subscription from Yahoo! -- and we all know that those premium services are close to Yahoo!'s heart.
In more interesting news, The Wall Street Journal reported that Google's once-mysterious Keyhole acquisition will allow Google users to use satellite map technology to scope out areas. Not only should that be helpful for, say, plotting out real estate with a view of a neighborhood, but imagine planning out your night on the town -- say you're going to a show and want to know what's nearby for a cup of coffee or dessert after the show.
As was pointed out in the WSJ, while Amazon.com's (Nasdaq: AMZN ) A9.com provides a view of restaurants and other businesses for certain cities, Yahoo!, Time Warner's (NYSE: TWX ) America Online, and Microsoft's (Nasdaq: MSFT ) MSN are currently lacking such visual features.
As much as the new features that Google and the other Internet giants release might begin to elicit a giant yawn, one truth remains as each one searches for ways to boost revenues. The search for stickiness -- and therefore more and more real estate to draw eyeballs and advertisers -- continues unabated.
For more on Google's recent blitzkrieg, read the following Foolish content from longtime Fool Rick Munarriz:
Amazon.com and Time Warner areMotley Fool Stock Advisorpicks. To find out more about the service, which serves up picks from Tom and David Gardner on a monthly basis, click here. To talk about Google's latest features, and whether you think it's a great investment or too expensive, talk to Fools on our Google discussion board.
Alyce Lomax does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned.