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Microsoft takes $6.2 billion of lumps on fizzled aQuantive online ad acquisition

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Among all the Windows 8, WP8 and Surface excitement of late, Redmond has also dropped a chunk of less shiny happy news: its online services division is taking a goodwill writeoff of $6.2 billion as a result of its ill-fated aQuantive acquisition in 2007. Not coincidentally, that's almost exactly what it paid for the company, which it brought in to create pre-Bing online ad revenue -- back when Mountain View was eating even more of its lunch in search. The software giant said that aQuantive didn't "accelerate growth" as much as intended, although it added that it still provides assets for its internet advertising activities. With the advent of tablets and smartphones since then, it seems unlikely we'll see any of its now-quaint tech -- like shopping cart-mounted computers -- again.

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