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AT&T Launching Location-Based Yelp Competitor Buzz.com

AT&T Launching Yelp Competitor Buzz.com
Location-based services and local searches are all the rage these days; just ask Google and Twitter. So AT&T -- which may be losing its iPhone exclusivity in the near future and has been taking a public beating over its network reliability -- is looking to grab a little bit of that luster by launching Buzz.com.

The site is currently in private alpha testing, drawing on the wealth of data the company has available thanks to its Yellow Pages location-based service, and pulling up search results in a way similar to Yelp. But Buzz.com doesn't just offer simple business listings; it will also connect with social networks to compile recommendations from friends as well as other user ratings. AT&T may be limiting Buzz's appeal and usefulness, however, by avoiding full-fledged reviews in favor of simply allowing people to tag favorites and add brief comments. There won't be room for negative reviews or complaints.

AT&T is hoping advertisers will also find value in the site, and hoping that they will offer discounts and other benefits as a way to attract business.

The company's Yellow Pages database, vast wireless network, and relationships with advertisers give it a good head start, but it remains to be seen whether or not it can pose a real challenge to existing, crowd-sourced services like Yelp. We'll know for sure in the next few months when it hits the public. [From: Forbes]

Tags: att, buzz.com, local, location based services, LocationBasedServices, top, yelp