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Vodafone moves in Mobile Social networking with ZYB acquisition

UK-based Network Operator Vodafone has completed the acquisition of ZYB, a Denmark-based privately owned company which started life as an online contact book management tool but quickly evolved into a mobile social network service.

The fact that Vodafone paid $50 million for the startup emphasizes the newly found interest that major telecoms operators have in online social services.

ZYB started life as simple calendar and contact synchronisation tool but quickly evolved into a fully fledged social network site that allowed customers to share information and messages between friends and colleagues, most of whom are in your address book.

Last month, ZYB gobbled Imity, one of its competitors as the mobile social networking market seems to enter a consolidation phase.

The news comes a few days after another Telecoms company based in the US, Verizon, announced that it had purchased Plaxo - which essentially offers the same service but on a much bigger scale - for roughly twice the price.

Pieter Knook, Internet Services Director for Vodafone Group, said that "Using a web portal as a link between the PC and the mobile device, ZYB provides an interactive way for people to nurture, contact and develop their relationships with their most important friends and colleagues and builds links with those contacts’ wider networks. This is Web 2.0 in action."

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.