Google has acquired a mobile social networking start-up called Zingku Inc., the search company's latest move to provide more services through mobile phones.
This company aims to make it easier for people to share photos, send invitations or conduct polls among friends via mobile phone. It also provides a way for businesses to send "mobile flyers" to customers advertising products and services.
Zingku was started in 2005 and the service has been in testing with a limited number of users in the U.S. New account sign-ups have been frozen following Google's acquisition, according to Zingku's Web site. Existing accounts will be transferred to Google unless they are cancelled by Oct. 4.
Detailed terms of the acquisition weren't provided and Google didn't return calls seeking comment. The company has confirmed that it bought "certain assets and technology of Zingku," according to the Google Operating System blog, which first reported the deal, and is not owned by Google.
Zingku's service is free for end users and aimed at teenagers and people in their 20s. It uses standard text and picture messaging features on mobile phones, and a browser on the Web, so no special software has to be installed.