REDMOND, Washington: The giant  immovable object that is Microsoft is trying to muscle in on a search and advertising deal being negotiated between irresistible force Google and the second largest mobile carrier in the US, Verizon Wireless.

Google is said to have been in long-term negotiations with Verizon Wireless about making its portal the default search engine on the majority of the latter's interet compatible cellphones.

Microsoft, however, is thought to have offered a more favourable financial package to Verizon than its search rival in an effort to gazump the deal. 

The tie-up would allow the search provider to offer targeted ads to consumers using the mobile web - an area observers predict will see increasing rivalry among major online players in the future.

Despite the failure of its proposed search advertising partnership with Yahoo, Google remains determined to further develop its business.

Speaking following the demise of the on–off saga with Yahoo, Google ceo Eric Schmidt said: "The particular issues around this one are fairly unique. I don't think it will change the way we do business. I don't know about perceptions."

Data sourced from Financial Times; additional content by WARC staff