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Google patents buyer-specific price drops for follow-up sales, can tell if you're a cheapskate

Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
September 5, 2012
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Ever been tempted to rent a movie again, but thought the price was just a little too dear? Google may soon be willing to haggle a deal. One of its newly-granted patents could automatically lower the price of repurchase-friendly content, such as a Google Play Movies rental, depending on how likely you are to pull the trigger. Its algorithm weighs your personal tastes and repurchasing habits against those of your peers: if the code senses you'll be relatively stingy, you'll get a better discount. The analysis could even factor in the nature of the content itself. A thoughtful movie, ownership of the soundtrack or just a lot of related searches could lead to a repurchase at the usual price, while a simple action flick with no previous interest may bring the discount into effect. We don't know if Google will offer these extra-personal discounts to the public at any point in the future, but if you suddenly notice a lot of follow-up bargains in Google Play, you'll know how they came to be.

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