Google has acquired Seattle-based start-up Wavii and is shutting down its service, the companies said today.
The move signals that Google is continuing to stay ahead of the curve when it comes to search and aggregation, according to Ezra Gotthiel, a senior analyst at Technology Business Research.
Wavii’s app, launched in 2009, used natural language engines to compile information from around the Web into stories modeled on the Facebook feed. It also personalized the stories it serves up to each user based on his or her Facebook likes.
“We’re impressed by the Wavii team’s progress in understanding natural language and we look forward to working with them at Google,” a Google spokesperson said.
Wavii also emphasized natural language.
“[W]e’ll be using our natural language research at Google in ways that may be useful to millions of people around the world,” said Wavii CEO Adrian Aoun.
Gotthiel thought Google could take Wavii’s technology in a few different directions. Natural language work lines up nicely with Google’s voice recognition technology, potentially helping beef out voice search. Google also continues to work on personalizing search results, even as it’s shuttering the iGoogle personalized home page.
“It could be a substitute for that. It may emerge as a new product or it may be embedded into their search” or News aggregator, Gotthiel said.