Best Buy and internet powerhouse Google announced a partnership designed to help the retailer compete in the mobile sales arena. In addition to other Best Buy strategies for ramping up their mobile division, one key aspect to their multiphase plan involves collaborating with Google on a series of exclusive mobile applications, the first one being a shopping app that helps customers find the item they're looking for within their nearest Best Buy store.Yesterday major electronics retailer
Best Buy's New Mobile Apps
According to Best Buy chief marketing officer Barry Judge, the new applications, which also include several Facebook apps that will appear on the company's branded page, take advantage of the company's "Remix API," (application programming interface). This allows third-party developers to access Best Buy's inventory data, pricing, and product images for use in their web or mobile applications.
Next month, the first of several Google-created Best Buy applications will launch. The new app will allow consumers to do product searches and then will provide them with the location and directions to their nearest Best Buy store. It will even direct the user to the exact location of the product within the store itself. Phones sold in Best Buy will include the app pre-loaded onto the handsets prior to purchase. Also coming are applications designed specifically for Android, Google's mobile operating system, but there's no word yet as to what those apps will be. Best Buy currently carries two models of Android phones, the G1 and the myTouch 3G.
Other Plans: Websites, Gadget Deals, and Facebook Apps
In addition, the company is launching a dedicated website for Best Buy Mobile in October, is lining up exclusive deals to sell highly anticipated gadgets like Nokia's first netbook, the Booklet 3G, and is launching a series of Facebook applications.
The revamped Facebook page, which the company said will attract anywhere from 3 to 4 million fans, will offer several apps designed to help holiday shoppers find gifts. One, the "Hint Hacker," allows visitors to send gift hints to their family and friends about what products they're interested in. Another, called the "Holiday Morning Simulator," is a goofy Christmas card where Best Buy Blue Shirt employees sing holiday tunes, also addresses gift-purchasing questions. A third is a Facebook Secret Santa app. These, too, will be revealed in the coming weeks.