Google holds a number of world records: the company is the largest Internet advertiser, the largest Internet search engine, the company with the largest online interactive map, and more. But Google is getting another badge for paying $25 million to own the “.app” top-level domain – the highest amount paid for a domain. ICANN’s website shows that the “.app” domain was auctioned on February 25, 2015.
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Of the thirteen applicants, which included Amazon and other leading top-level domain (TLD) providers, Charleston Road Registry Inc. won by bidding $25,001,000. A quick search reveals that Charleston Road Registry Inc. is owned by Google. Business Insider is also reporting the story.
In 2012, Google submitted applications for new TLDs issued by ICANN. The applications included “.app,” “.android,” “.buy,” “.gmail,” “.youtube,” and more. From the list, Google has acquired “.how,” “.soy,” and, most recently, “.app.” Google says that it will use the “.how” domain for how-to websites. The “.soy” domain, meanwhile, is for the U.S. Hispanic market, Google said.
It’s still unclear what Google has in mind for the domain, although it could be used to promote apps. Note that Google has over 1.43 million apps while Apple has 1.21 million. In a statement, Google said, "We've been excited and curious about the potential for new TLDs for .soy long. We are very .app-y with .how, at a .minna-mum, they have the potential to .foo-ward internet innovation."