Google Buys Blogger
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Web search powerhouse Google has bought the Pyra Labs and its web log creation/hosting service Blogger. Financial details of the deal were not announced.

Google's immediate plans for the acquisition were also not announced. On his own weblog, Pyra Founder Evan Williams said, "For Blogger, and for Blogger users (and for the blogging world in general—Blogger-using or not—because I know that's a concern), [the acquisition's] going to mean great things, I believe. We're going to be mapping out more clearly what that means and talking about it soon. We don't mean to be mysterious about that. We just haven't had time to put it all together yet."

Pyra's Blogger service offers users the ability to easily publish their own web sites with a minimum of technical expertise. The company's website describes the service as "a web-based tool that helps you publish to the web instantly -- whenever the urge strikes. Blogger is the leading tool in the rapidly growing area of web publishing known as weblogs, or 'blogs.'"

Blogger currently offers free and fee-based services. In addition to its weblog development and posting tool, the free Blogger service provides free hosting on its Blog*Spot service

The Blog*Spot Plus services start at $5.00/month. It provides:

  • Image hosting
  • No ads
  • Additional pages
  • Statistics tracking
  • Password protection
  • Multiple blogs on one site

 Before the aquisition, Blogger offered a feature-rich BloggerPro service for $35/year (with a plan to increase the service to $50/year some time in the future). BloggerPro provided numerous enhancements over the free service, including:

  • Spellchecking
  • Title Fields
  • Image Posting
  • Better Archiving
  • Broadcasting Your Blog via Email
  • Post to Your Blog via Email
  • RSS Generation (to create a newsfeed of your blog)
  • Secure Logins

As of March 4, BloggerPro was no longer available to order. The service's page carried the following notice:

 We're working on this site. Please try back later. (This only affects ordering Blogger Pro, if you are a Pro user, you can log in and get to your blog via www.)

To read more about recent additions to Google's functionality, see these articles:

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