Nokia buys location social networker Plazes

Nokia has once again found its way to its wallet for the latest in a recent run of acquisitions: this time, it’s snapped up German social networking firm Plazes. Nokia describes it as “a context-aware social-activity service that people can use to plan, record, and share their social activities: why they are at a given location at a given time, whether in the past, present or future”. It’s a privately owned company and Nokia hasn’t divulged how much it’s spent.

It looks like Nokia’s planning to cannibalise some of the features from Plazes, with the company saying its going to extend its own context-based services with the social presence and time-based activity planning features Plazes has.

Given Nokia has spent a lot of cash mapping and/or navigation companies – think Gate5 and Navteq – it’s little wonder that it’s now looking for new services to offer on top of the maps and new ways to monetise them. Social networking though is mostly an ads fuelled business – I wonder if Nokia will be sticking with that model, or experimenting with charging users a subscription for the geographic services.

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