Getfugu is a mobile company with mild multiple-personality disorder. It provides a number of very different services, with mobile search being the most recent area it has branched into. The search engine it offers combines a number of mobile search types that have been popular of late: local search, logo based visual search, voice search and a new service it calls “hotspotting.” At all costs, Getfugu wants to avoid having users actually type anything into a text box.
The BETA service for Getfugu will be available by the start of May, and will contain four search options:
See It – an image recognition app. Getfugu will allow users to take snaps of clients logos, which will then retrieve content from the brand owner.
Say It – consumers can use voice recognition to speak search phrases. This will work on branded content from Getfugu clients, and on generic keywords like “pizza” or “ATM.”
Find It – a local content search, Getfugu uses GPS to locate proximity results from searches. Local businesses can pay for voice-activated key words to position themselves at the top of the search list.
Get it - this is the “Hot-Spotting” option Getfugu is providing. This option allows advertisers to place touch-screen adverts within a mobile video. So if a customer sees a product from one of Getfugu’s clients in a video, they can simply tap the product on the screen to purchase or get info. This function is currently limited to touch-screen phones and selected Blackberry models.
Getfugu charges $9.99 per month for small businesses, and $99 per month for companies with ten or more employees. That price will get you a single logo or keyword in the Getfugu search engine – for larger companies with multiple logos and keywords, each one will have to be purchased separately. Mobile hotspotting will split the revenue 50/50 per transaction with the advertiser.
From the release:
“Getfugu will help consumers retrieve web based content. So rather than type a website address or search term into a browser, consumers turn to Getfugu. Our goal is to become the ultimate standard for mobile web-search by simplifying the customer journey and delivering a flawless Direct-Connect service,” said Getfugu Inc CEO Bernie Stolar.
What we think?
It’s a long-standing complaint about mobile search that typing in search queries is a long, painful process – especially as you rarely (if ever) get your intended result on the first try. It’s a noble thing that Getfugu is attempting here, trying to draw together all of the most succesful forms of non-text based search into one platform, but does it have a good chance of succeeding? Well… it depends. This is an almost entirely business-oriented service – even the voice search works off purchased keywords. I can see this being a powerful tool for local search – being able to say “shoes” into your phone, and recieving GPS results with directions is a good service. But I can’t see it will having the wider appeal that a text-based, on-line style search would have.