Looks like Marissa Mayer’s startup shopping spree hasn’t ended yet. The Yahoo CEO announced today at the company’s CES press conference that it has acquired Aviate, the contextually-aware launcher replacement for Android devices.
Aviate, which raised a $1.8 million round of funding last year from venture capital firms, has generated a lot of buzz for evoking Google Now in the way it adjusts home screens depending on location and time of day. While at a workplace, for example, Aviate provides shortcuts to apps for business, but at a local attraction, the widgets and icons may change to a check-in service like Foursquare. Such “activities” are customizable, but limited by the types of apps installed; no OpenTable, for instance, means restaurant reservations won’t be displayed. To remedy this and monetize, Aviate intended to offer app recommendations in the future, although it’s unclear if Yahoo has other plans.
Concerning how Yahoo intends to leverage Aviate’s technology, the company didn’t elaborate. However, Yahoo is clearly in a celebratory mood, because it’s offering additional beta spots to 25,000 new users. (Use the code “YAHOO” when signing up.)