Yahoo Acquires Mobile News Start-Up Summly
A London teenager has sold a mobile app he first designed in his bedroom for between £20 million and £40 million.
Nick D’Aloisio, 17, said he would probably buy a new computer and trainers after Yahoo bought his Summly software for an undisclosed sum.
Yahoo said today on its blog that Nick D’Aloisio will join Yahoo along with the rest of his team.
The free iPhone app automatically boils down lengthy news stories and features to make them more “user friendly” for a mobile screen.
Chief Executive Officer Marissa Mayer is focusing Yahoo on providing Web services that are customized for individual users, and aims to add engineers by buying small technology startups, she said on a conference call last year. Yahoo has acquired at least six such teams — including Jybe Inc., Stamped Inc., OntheAir, Snip.it and Alike — since Mayer took over in July.
“Most articles and Web pages were formatted for browsing with mouse clicks,” Yahoo said on the blog. “The ability to skim them on a phone or a tablet can be a real challenge. We want easier ways to identify what’s important to us.”
Mayer has said she sees the company building sites and technologies that are daily habits for consumers, such as checking e-mail and stock tickers. In January, she said she’s focused on technology that will personalize content from the Web and deliver it to people on their handheld devices.
“We think about how do we take the Internet and order it for you,” Mayer said. Yahoo intends to be “a feed of information that is ordered, the Web is ordered for you and is also on your mobile phone.”