Is Google selling mobile phones?

septembre, 23, 2009

Here in France, we had this morning a funny surprise during our first request to Google France. Indeed, the homepage presents this small sentence under the search box « Nouveau! Le téléphone HTC Magic est disponible. En savoir Plus ». This litterally means  « New! The telephone HTC Magic is available. To know more about it « , with a link to this this page of


On the target page, a cool picture of the HTC Magic Android, and 2 links to a SFR (the third  French mobile phone company – 19 million clients, including over 3 million using 3G technology, according to wikipedia) webpage that allows to buy this phone together with a cell phone plan.

Android is really some good stuff, and I guess that the HTC as well, but I really wanted to say « pwned« . You could ask me why? here is a few reasons:

  1. I always thought that Google was not to put advertisement on its webpage. But since Chrome I know how wrong I was.
  2. I always thought that in case a link is done for commercial reasons, it must use the Nofollow attribute. Is this the case here? Maybe I missed something, but I don’t think so. By the way, it looks like Google is making affiliate links for SFR…
  3. I always thought that it is mandatory to clearly states that an ad is an ad (even if « by google ») 😉

Anyway, a real and useful comment for Google: your intermediate page does not give information on the product, and the SFR webpage is too much of a selling page to give really accurate technical information about the phone.

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Picture: courtesy of Abby Blank