Hot Stocks: Google's Drive for Dominance Extends Into the Burgeoning Smartphone Market

Google Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOG) was founded in 1996 and went on to become the undisputed king of Internet search and advertising. Ten years later, it brought its ubiquitous search engine to mobile phones with the launch of Google Mobile.

And now, with the proliferation of smartphones, Google is pursuing a broader range of mobile initiatives that will make it a leader in mobile software and take its advertising business into territory that so far has been uncharted.

Google's original business model, as it applies to its trademark search engine, was to give away a product and have it funnel users to its targeted ads. Last year, the company built on that model by giving away its operating system (OS), Android, to any wireless handset maker that would have it.