Google announced today that Hotpot, the communal recommendation application, will be rolled up into Places, the company’s local product offering.
Google announced the move in a blog post today, saying that it would help simplify their online location and recommendation business.
Here’s what the blog post had to say:
“It’s been incredibly exciting to watch Hotpot grow—the community has quickly expanded to millions of users who are rating more than one million times per month and enjoying a truly personalized view of the world. Based on this success, we’ve decided to graduate Hotpot to be a permanent part of our core local product offering, Google Places. Rolling Hotpot into Google Places helps simplify the connection between the places that are rated and reviewed and the more than 50 million places that already have an online presence through Google Places—places that millions of people search for and find every day on Google.”
The consolidation makes perfect sense considered that Hotpot and Places are almost the same thing–they pretty much go hand-in-hand with one another, and there’s no need for the company to confuse consumers with multiple product offerings that all relate to location. Streamlining their vast social offerings seems like a necessary move if they want to compete with other social companies like Facebook.