Mobile Bookmarking Team From Spool Acquired By Facebook
John Neumann for redOrbit.com – Your Universe Online
The brains behind mobile app design company Spool specializes in mobile bookmarking and sharing content for smartphones or tablets and have been acquired by Facebook with the goal of refining its income from mobile apps.
When asked by AFP news service the reason for the acquisition, Facebook replied, “The Spool team has deep expertise in mobile software development and a passion for making content easy to consume. We’re excited for the team to join and accelerate their vision at Facebook.”
Facebook will not take over the company or its assets, a Facebook spokeswoman said, instead, they are hiring away the designers of the team. “The Spool team has deep expertise in mobile software development and a passion for making content easy to consume. We’re excited for the team to join and accelerate their vision at Facebook,” the social network explained in a statement.
Spool makes free Google Android and Apple iOS apps for smartphones and tablets that let users save online articles and video that is viewable online or off, think of a DVR for the internet, writes Joseph Walker for Wall Street Journal’s Digits Blog.
Facebook has declared a priority of improving its mobile offerings to keep up users who are increasingly accessing the service from smartphones or tablets.
Lack of a clear strategy for making money from users who connect to the social network with mobile devices was considered to be among the reasons .
Facebook stock sank below its debut price of $38 per share in May of this year. One of the primary reasons for this, pundits complain, is the lack of a clear strategy for monetizing its mobile user base, AFP reports.
Spool launched in private beta in September of 2011 after debuting at TechCrunch Disrupt. “Spool is an easy way to save articles, image galleries, and videos to get back to later,” the company said at the time. “Just click on the Spool add-on in your browser and the page you’re on will show up on your phone.” By January, it had raised $1 million in funding from 15 investors, reports Chloe Albanesius for PC Mag.
The Spool team, consisting of about six employees, was co-founded by Avichal Garg, a former Google product manager, under the premise that using the internet on mobile devices is still pretty annoying, despite the explosion of internet use on smartphones and tablets.
Spool’s solution allows users to save, or “spool,” content from their desktop web browsers and then have it transmitted to their mobile devices for later viewing. Or users can send an article from a mobile browsers and send it to Spool and have it reformatted in a way that’s easier to consume than on a mobile browser.
In recent months, Facebook has acquired several startups in hopes of rounding out its technology base. Some of the companies now under Facebook’s umbrella include Face.com, Piecable’s mobile development team, and social discovery app Glancee. It also shelled out a rumored $1 billion for Instagram.
Financial terms of the Spool team acquisition were not disclosed.