THE BROWSER: Truth and rumors from the tech world
Rival trashes Google's growth prospects
A Yahoo programmers says Google's numbers won't be enough to help it meet its revenue growth forecast of 30 percent.
By Owen Thomas, Business 2.0 online editor

SAN FRANCISCO (Business 2.0) - Granted, he works for the competition, but Amr Awadallah's post about Google's earnings announcement earlier this month has had people buzzing for weeks. Awadallah, a software engineer at Yahoo (Research), recently updated his analysis: He believes that Google (Research) will miss Wall Street's expectations for revenue growth of around 30 percent. Awadallah, who clearly has an inside view on the business of search, notes that pageviews at Google aren't growing fast enough to make that number without a notable increase in how much Google gets paid per ad.

BlackBerry jam not so sweet for competition

BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (Research) has seen its service put in jeopardy by legal rulings in a patent case -- which should create a PR opportunity for smaller rivals. But Canadian tech writer Mark Evans eagerly debunks mainstream reporting saying that RIM's customers are fleeing to the competition. Evans notes that executives from Nokia's (Research) Intellisync, Good Technology, and Visto all freely spoke about RIM's woes -- but each declined to provide any hard evidence that they were gaining business at its expense.

AOL to charge email senders per message

The war on spam has collateral damage: legitimate senders whose email ends up in junk mail folders. For years, AOL has maintained a "whitelist" of such senders to make sure their email goes through. But spammers have figured out how to trick their way onto AOL's whitelist. So now, the ISP (owned, like, by Time Warner (Research)) is switching to a system where commercial email senders must pay a fraction of a cent per email to make sure their messages go through. As an investor in a rival to the company AOL is using to do this, venture capitalist Fred Wilson is hardly an objective observer, but he nevertheless argues convincingly that this amounts to selling access to AOL users' inboxes. "The spammers have won," he says. "They have turned email delivery into a business that can be bought and sold for the highest price. And AOL is leading the way. Of course."

New York Times Web chief set to lose bet

Back in 2002, Martin Nisenholtz, head of New York Times Digital, made a $2000 bet with blogger Dave Winer that Times stories would score higher than blog entries on Google searches for the top five news stories of 2007. Another blogger, Jason Kottke, has run an analysis of some of the top stories of 2005. With two years to go, it doesn't look good for the Times: blogs beat the Times resoundingly by six to two. Top of page

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