PC World adds off-site reviews

Tech publisher PC World, whose product reviews have long been a major staple of its content, is adding links to comparisons and expert and user reviews from other publications, sites and blogs.

 PC World partnered with electronic product comparison site Retrevo in the venture. Under the agreement, PC World is selling advertising programs for the Retrevo Web site, in addition to the content sharing.

“More than anything, it’s an acknowledgement that there’s openness to the Web,” said PC World CEO and president Mike Kisseberth. “In terms of a technology site linking to outside product reviews, it has not been done before.”

He added the company understands that PC World users can easily find this information anyway, so decided to make it available from the PC World Web site. “It’s a cool thing and it will help build some brand loyalty,” Kisseberth said. “It’s clear that Retrevo is a site that’s attracting tech buyers, and our ad partners are looking for tech buyers, and this allows us to extend the value we provide to our ad relationships,” said Kissebreth.

Retrevo uses artificial intelligence technology to scan millions of data sources and aggregate, analyze and classify information covering more than 40 different consumer electronics product categories such as PCs, digital cameras, HDTVs and GPS systems, according to the company.

Retrevo says it processes more than 200,000 products, hundreds of thousands of prices, and more than 6.5 million user and expert reviews and articles.

Vipin Jain, CEO of Retrevo, said the Web site’s goal is to “simplify the way people consume information.”

The site, which has been open to the public since November 2006, reached out to PC World about content sharing possibilities.

“It was the first one to realize it has to open up,” said Jain. “We talked about how (the Web) was evolving. It came to the realization very, very quickly that it is a good thing for consumers to have this information.”

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