AOL, the majority-owned subsidiary of Time Warner Inc., has announced the launch of new language portals in Hindi and Tamil. The Internet portal has also launched its subsidiary Truveo’s popular video search engine in India, marking its presence in the eighth country here. AOL Hindi will offer content including news, comprehensive coverage of movies, astrology and Hindi literature.
Jeffrey L Brewes, President and COO, Time Warner said, “India is the most important market for us as it is one of the fastest growing markets, especially online. AOL is launching content channels in Hindi and Tamil, improving the breadth of AOL’s offerings at a time when the online audience is skyrocketing. The number of Internet users in urban India have grown by 28 per cent since last year, and about 60 per cent of all active online Indians prefer to read in local Indian languages.”
Timothy Tuttle, CEO and Co-Founder of Truveo, and Senior VP, AOL Video, said, “This video search engine was created in the US four years ago. There are four billion new videos that are being uploaded on the Internet everyday. The challenge is to find what you want. Truveo will find every single video on the Internet in an organised manner. Truveo video search engine allows users to search and browse through scores of videos from thousand of sources across the web, and reaches more than 40 million users a month in the US.”
www.in.truveo.com will enable users to search for all their favourite videos across India-specific content like cricket, films, music and news, among others. Tuttle explained that no copyright issues were involved on Truveo. The site will direct users to the original site, and the Truveo would divert traffic to the original legal site.
Regarding advertising on the Indian Truveo site and the revenue model, Tuttle said, “In the US, we target display and targetted ads on Truveo. There are no ads in the Indian site now, and we don’t plan to have any for the next two years. However, we do a lot of a lot of innovations. We ensure users get adapted to the site, and we don’t want advertising to get in between consumer satisfaction.”
Ron Grant, President and COO, AOL, said, “We take content from multiple sources for AOL. We have multiple pillars and strong distribution deals. While online advertising in the US constitutes 10 per cent of the advertising industry, in India it constitutes a mere 2 per cent. These are also important steps in our ongoing efforts to make AOL a truly global company. We started this year with three international portals in Europe, and we will end 2008 with presence in 30 countries around the world.”