I use DomainTools to track the domain name acquisitions of several major companies. I find it interesting to see what these companies are either buying in the aftermarket or hand registering, and I also think these acquisitions can provide insight for my business or become fodder for an article on this blog.
As you might expect, Apple makes quite a bit of domain name purchases. Most of the domain names I track are brand-related domain names. Many seem to be of a defensive nature. For instance, Apple is buying quite a few new gTLD domain names and ccTLD domain names related to products and other trademarks. For the most part, it doesn’t seem like Apple is using many of these domain names (for instance, you can see AppleNews.Taipei and MacbookPro.online aren’t resolving).
One domain name that is being used is Apple.CO. If you visit Apple.CO, you are redirected to the company’s website, Apple.com. This is smart because I presume there are a fair amount of typos and a non-resolving page wouldn’t make sense for the company.
In addition to this usage, Apple is also using Apple.CO as a url shortener of sorts. If you visit the App Store Twitter page, their internal website links have Apple.CO urls rather than Apple.com. Some of the urls they reference include:
One thing I found interesting is that if you directly navigate to the referenced urls, but accidentally “typo” it as Apple.com, most of those urls do not seem to work. For instance, if you visit Apple.com/Paper, you see a 404 error rather than the intended page on the Apple awebsite.
There are many companies that use .CO domain names as url shorteners. Google uses its G.CO domain name and obviously Twitter uses T.CO for url shortening. I thought it was interesting to see how Apple is using its exact match .CO domain name. I wonder if they would have chosen to use A.CO if Amazon hadn’t bought the domain name.