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Shopping engine Become.com chooses iPad for mobile debut

By
August 26, 2010

Become.com's iPad application

Become.com's iPad application

Comparison shopping service Become.com stepped into the mobile world with the release of its iPad application targeting women.

The free application lets consumers browse through more than 25 million products ranging from apparel and home goods to computers and electronics. The items span more than 800 product categories from 3,000-plus retailers.

“Become’s market strategy is to provide an all-inclusive shopping experience across multiple category verticals as well as platforms,” said Michael Yang, CEO of Become.com, Sunnyvale, CA.

Becoming features
Become.com’s application lets consumers search and compare product details, reviews and price ranges from retailers including TigerDirect.com, Lowe’s, Crate & Barrel, Footsmart, Overstock.com, Calvin Klein and Pacific Sunwear.

becomeappConsumers can search for luxury items on Become.com’s application, ranging from Tory Burch shoes to Gucci sunglasses and Cartier watches. Purchases happen on partner Web sites and vary depending on the retailer.

“We have features like ShopTop, which allows the user to compare products side by side as well as place them onto an image that the user selects to see, for example, how a sofa would look in a room,” Mr. Yang said.

“Users can browse by category or input a search query into the search box which will return the most relevant products,” he said.

By using the Cloud View feature, products can be blown up and placed side-by-side to compare details.

Become.com specializes in comparison shopping and spans multiple verticals. It enables consumers to find and compare products and services through a shopping search engine.

becomeapp3The iPad application is Become.com’s first foray into the mobile space. Since its release last week it has received more than 2,500 iPad downloads.

Become.com plans on soon releasing applications for the iPhone and Android.

To spread word about the iPad application, Become.com is using Google mobile AdSense, mobile advertising and on-site awareness campaigns. It is also deploying traditional public relations.

Sweet deals
Mobile shopping search engines are not new to the Apple App store, though.

Sugar Inc. last year launched its iPad application, ShopStyle. The shopping engine enables customers to shop comparatively and features apparel and home accessories from luxury brands such as Christian Louboutin, Marc Jacobs and Michael Kors (see story).

Also, TheFind in 2000 released its iPhone application, another shopping engine enabling comparative retail shopping. It features luxury brands such as Diane von Furstenburg, Rebecca Minkoff and Tibi, combining a list of coupons and discounted shipping offers for consumers (see story).

Become.com’s Mr. Yang claims his service is differentiated.

“While we have electronics and computer products on our site, our strength is in the clothing and home goods categories,” Mr. Yang said.

“For this reason, we see women as our primary user,” he said. “That said, everyone can use our application, since we have over 25 million products.”

Final Take
Kaitlyn Bonneville, editorial assistant at Mobile Commerce Daily, New York

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