Google acquires Web gadget firm Labpixies

Posted by Mike Luttrell

The latest company in Google's portfolio comes all the way from Tel Aviv. The online search giant has picked up Israel-based Labpixies for a reported $25 million.

Labpixies is an admittedly unknown company to most people, though it has a notable presence on everything from Facebook to the iPhone to Google's customizable "iGoogle" home page.

The company specializes in making widgets for most of the big names in Web and mobile. If you use the Weatherbug or Travelocity widgets on Facebook, or you notice the "YouTube Top Videos" pane on your iGoogle page, then you're one of the more than 40 million people who use Labpixies' widgets.

Google had already been using Labpixies' work, using some of its iGoogle gadgets on the default start screens, and the little start-up is obviously familiar with Google platforms. It's also interesting, though, with the company's presence on competing services like the iPhone OS and Yahoo Web sites.

For now, Google has no drastic plans to change Labpixies' operations, though that will most certainly change in the coming months. For now, it will operate as usual from its Tel Aviv offices.

In an interview with Eweek, iGoogle programmer Don Loeb said that the acquisition made sense after it began working more closely with Labpixies. "We decided that we could do more if we were part of the same team, and as such, we're thrilled to announce the acquisition of LabPixies," he said.