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Google drops cash on virtual currency firm Jambool

Yet another wink at Web2.0 wench

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Google has bought a virtual currency software firm as part of its latest effort to build a Web 2.0 empire by scooping up social networking outfits.

Jambool confirmed on Friday that it had joined “the Google family”. However, financial terms of the deal were kept quiet.

The company started life as a social collaboration platform in 2006. A year later it began building applications on social networks that allowed the firm to punt virtual currency and goods to any brave soul willing to part with cash online.

“Social Gold has grown by leaps and bounds since it went live in 2008. In the first half of 2010, we've processed more than double the entire payment volume we processed in all of 2009,” said Jambool.

“When the opportunity arose to join forces with Google… we couldn't pass it up. We are thrilled to bring the Social Gold platform to Google's global users.”

Last week Google bought social network tech outfit Slide for an undisclosed sum in its latest effort to tackle Facebook’s Web 2.0 dominance.

That buy came just 48 hours after Google killed its Wave tool, which made a splash landing in May 2009. But within a year of its birth, the email-IM-and-everything-else-Web-2.0-splatter-gun platform had proved itself to be an unpopular product that no one wanted to play with.

Google’s latest efforts to bolt on social network startups to its portfolio simply represent the company’s latest desire to out-Facebook Facebook. But it’s failed so far to come anywhere near unseating boydroid Mark Zuckerberg and his crew. ®

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