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Google Unveils New Zagat-Driven Review Site

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    NEWSLETTERS

    In her second appearance on Press:Here the Google vice president gets local. With reporters Jon Swartz from USA Today and Rich Jaroslavsky from Bloomberg Businessweek. (Published Friday, Feb 24, 2012)

    It took less than a year for Google to show off what it planned to do with its $151 million purchase of Zagat.

    The Mountain View-based search company said Wednesday that Zagat reviews will be part of a new feature called Google Plus Local, which will give users reviews and information on local sites from restaurants to a barbershop.

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    "Google+ Local helps people like my husband turn a craving—'Wow, I need brunch'—into an afternoon outing: 'Perfect, there’s a dim sum place with great reviews just two blocks from here. Let’s go,'" Google Director of Product Management Avni Shah said in a blog post. "It’s integrated into Search, Maps and mobile and available as a new tab in Google+—creating one simple experience across Google."

    Google will employ Zagat's 30 point rating system for reviews and the new service will be fully integrated with several other Google offerings, including Google Maps and Google Plus.

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    The new feature will allow Google to further push hyper local sales and compete at a deeper level with sites such as OpenTable and Yelp.

    Google famously was rumored to be in conversation to purchase Yelp in 2009 for more than $500 million only to have its offers rebuffed by the review site.