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Nielsen Buys Mobile Research Firm

Ratings giant Nielsen says it is buying Telephia, a San Francisco-based media measurement and research firm that focuses on mobile media, as it looks to provide measurement services for the exploding mobile sector.

Terms of the agreement between the two private companies were not disclosed. The deal is expected to close in the third quarter, subject to regulatory approval.

Telephia provides syndicated consumer research on mobile usage patterns and serves over 100 clients in the U.S., Canada and Europe including mobile operators, device manufacturers, retailers, infrastructure vendors, investment analysts and content providers. The company provides independent, technology-based measurements of consumer behavior, product quality, and consumer attitudes, and tracks subscriber market share, network quality, consumer satisfaction, and mobile media consumption.

Nielsen has already been targeting mobile media consumption with its Anytime Anywhere Media Measurement (A2/M2), which  measures consumer use of video and online activity on any platform, and recently announced that its Nielsen Wireless service will begin measuring how many people use content services such as mobile Internet and mobile video. It faces competition in the space from firms like Rentrak, which has struck a deal with mobile TV provider HiWire to measure its subscribers' viewing patterns.

"As media content increasingly moves from television to the personal computer to the ‘third screen’ of the mobile device, it is essential that we measure all platforms," said Susan Whiting, Executive VP of The Nielsen Company, in a statement. “Combining Nielsen’s worldwide strengths and measurement expertise with Telephia’s cutting edge research and measurement capabilities in the mobile content arena expands our capabilities in the vital, high-growth telecom and mobile media markets. Building on the compatible strengths of both companies enables us to provide more complete consumer insights to clients around the world.”