Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has spent more than $1 billion on over a dozen acquisitions, deals that have been all over the map in terms of size and focus. Is there any coherent strategy at work here?
Yahoo announced that it acquired Qwiki, a company that provides a storytelling app on mobile. Yahoo has been on an acquisition tear recently, from large companies like Tumblr down to smaller startups.
Qwiki, the start-up known for creating automated multimedia presentations, is launching a new media format that allows publishers, bloggers, web personalities and others to create 60-second video stories that are embedded with other videos, images, maps and links. ABC News is one of the first partners.
In the past couple of months, New York has attracted former San Francisco startup Qwiki, PlaceIQ from Colorado and recent 500 Startups graduate Snapette of Boston, which spent the past half of a year in Silicon Valley. New York is becoming a destination for startups.
Qwiki, the San Francisco-based search startup, may be going through a rough patch. Qwiki’s two top technical executives and at least one early engineer left abruptly last week, sources say, after major disagreements with the CEO over the company’s future product strategy.
Qwiki presents search results in a montage of images, video, animations and other visual resources, and overlays it with real-time narration, using text-to-speech technology. The result is information as a watchable experience. For me, the experience of watching the content is eerie and unsettling.