If you've been following web developments over the last year you'll know URL shorteners - those things that turn
into http://bit.ly/timeforcake - have been big news. You'll also know they make very little money and providers keep going out of business, so why would these two juggernauts get involved?
Late yesterday both Google and Facebook joined the tribe of URL shortener lemmings with the rather cleverly named 'Goo.gl' and 'Fb.me'. Why? Because both can afford to run them at losses while making them the default tools for their services.
Currently neither goo.gl or fb.me are particularly usable with the former only "currently available for Google products and not for broader consumer use" while fb.me simply works as a link to the Facebook homepage. That said, current URL shortener leader bit.ly (which also just opened at 'Pro' service for publishers) must be starting to sweat a bit.
In related news Google has begun a limited roll-out of its property search functionality into Google Maps UK. The feature, which is not showing up for everyone (read: me), has added the option to filter 'Real Estate' under the 'More...' tab in maps. Predictably enough, this is currently limited to London.
Dear Rightmove and Prime Location, please join the sweating-over-your-future-queue-behind-bit.ly...