March 2, 2015
What’s $25 million to Google (GOOG)? Apparently it’s not too much to pay to buy a top-level web domain, which the search conglomerate just did to snap up the exclusive rights to the .app appellation in an ICANN auction.
Google bested 12 competitors, mostly notably Amazon (AMZN), for .app. Technically speaking, Google’s Charleston Road domain registry won the rights to the top-level .app domain for $25,001,000.
As of February 27, there were 810 top-level domains, according to the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA). Google applied for a slew of top-level domains beginning in 2012, including .docs, .android, .free, .fyi, .foo, and .app, following ICANN’s decision a few years earlier to open up generic TLD’s for sale at auction, Business Insider reported.
While Google’s auction price for .app obviously is high, some of the other dollar amounts paid for TLDs in the last year are nothing to sneeze at. For example, last year Dot Tech reportedly beat out Google last year when it plunked down $6.7 million for .tech, and Amazon bought .buy for about $5 million and .spot for $2.2 million.
Among its growing portfolio of top-level domains, Google hasn’t opened .ads, .eat, .fly to the public but it is allowing registration for the .how, .soy, and .minna domains at its Charleston Road registry. At some point, Google intends to be the registry for TLDs .dad, .here, .eat, and .new, along with .app. Business Insider reported that people can’t buy domains such as cooking.how from Google’s registry right now. The company’s domain registration service is currently in beta.
“We’ve been excited and curious about the potential for new TLDs for .soy long. We are very .app-y with .how, at a .minna-mum, they have the potential to .foo-ward internet innovation,” Google told Business Insider in an email.
Just what Google will do with .app remains an unanswered question but it’s a safe assumption it will direct it toward app development and marketing. Along those lines, Google said it will begin testing search ads in the Google Play store, Business Insider reported.
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