What is Jaiku ?

A cousin of Twitter, this now-defunct microblogging social network and mobile-phone app was started in Finland and later purchased by Google.

Interesting enough Google decided to acquire Jaiku and not the more popular, and similar, Twitter, which is very popular in the US. Jaiku was cheaper and in many ways a better service. When Twitter focused on fast user growth they chose to focus on innovation.

Startups in the social networking genre really have two options if they want to be acquired. Either they have the largest user base or are the best innovators. Facebook has a large user base; Jaiku has an innovative service with a growing user base. Google has for a long time known that it is better to buy innovation than users. Judging from their acquisitions only YouTube and DoubleClick were market leaders in terms of users in their respective niches.


In the future I think it will be much more common for Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and other big actors to acquire early. Jaiku certainly had a user base but had not had any success similar to that of the other big recent acquisitions: YouTube, Del.icio.us or Flickr.

When Google announced in late 2011 that it was shutting down the Jaiku service for good, a group of dedicated users set up an archiving system so account holders could preserve the conversations and content from the social site.

Google announced that it was shutting down Jaiku for good, effective Jan. 15, 2012

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