"One app. Lots of stuff."
That's Google's tagline for their Google Mobile application... but it really should be: "One app. Lots of promotion." If you have been to any tech blog over the past two weeks, you have certainly seen Google advertising for their mobile app - which is an excellent product. But the frequency with which the ads are running - and their appearance in typically high value rotations (sometimes two or three per page) is, at the very least, revealing of how important Google considers its mobile strategy.
Whether or not Android becomes a (or the) dominant mobile player - Google stands to monetize traffic from iPhones, Blackberries, etc. And it is important to realize that Google's advertising flurry coincides with their AdSense for Mobile launch... so in effect the ad campaign has two audiences and benefits: Driving Mobile Adoption - reach consumers and drive Google Mobile downloads - which result in more frequent Google search usage on handsets - which results in better penetration of Mobile Ads... monetized of course by Google
Reach Publishers and Developers - Prominently targeting tech pubs - repeatedly - reaching publishers and developers - who are reminded (repeatedly) of Google's efforts in Mobile - and thus encouraged to either integrate or develop alongside
When competing with Google - one of the biggest concerns is always their ability to leverage the network (in a way comparable to most others' house ads) to drive brand awareness and buy market share.