Amazon Challenges Groupon While Android Shipments Rocket Higher

Lots of news surrounding daily deals business in the tech sector (NYSE:XLK) today, here’s a look at some of the top stories:

Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), a company that already has a vast population of loyal eCommerce users, is launching its own daily deals service starting in Chicago this week. The city is notably also the hometown of the biggest name in daily deals, Groupon. Amazon’s thing is called AmazonLocal, and the company says of it, “Customers already know and trust Amazon.com for their online purchases, and now with Amazon Local, they can also find great deals right in their own city. AmazonLocal is a great way for residents of the Windy City to enjoy the restaurants, spas, and activities in their backyard.” Amazon has said it is working with Living Social (NASDAQ:AMZN) to build a client base in cities such as Seattle, Boise, the Los Angeles area and Palm Beach, Fla, but plans to hire its own sales team later this year.

Hot Feature: The Future of Streaming Video.

Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is also making headway in the development of its local discount service, Google Offers. The company launched beta testing of the service in Portland and New York this summer, and if all goes well it will be slated for a nation-wide release later in the year. As you may recall, the search engine and smartphone leader put in a $6 billion dollar bid to buy Groupon last year, which was rejected. Today Google upped its own deals infrastructure by acquiring “Dealmap” a startup company that aggregates discounts from a variety of deal-finding websites, for an undisclosed sum.

More Google news today in the smartphone arena as the latest shipping data showed that Android phone shipments were up 379% in the second quarter this year. Android now accounts for 48% of global shipments. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone held a 20% share of global shipments, limited in its scale compared to Google due to the fact that it is the only distributor of the iPhone, where Google distributes phones through a number of vendors, among them Samsung, Motorola (NYSE:MMI), and Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ). Research in Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM) continues to struggle, with market share falling to 12%, down from 33% last year, in North America. Nokia (NYSE:NOK) also continues to lose market share in the US, but remains a solid leader in emerging market nations.

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