Blogger, the popular free blogging platform, just launched a new feature called Blogger Stats, according to TechCrunch. It gives a pseudo-real time overview of page visits, article popularity, and traffic source statistics, and it's available on any non-private blog hosted by Blogger. By itself, the news isn't exactly noteworthy; there are many free and user-friendly traffic tracking tools external to the Blogger platform that feature the same functionality. What's interesting is that one of the most popular statistics tools in the non-Blogger world is Google Analytics, and Blogger is owned by Google.
What this news means for Google Analytics is as of yet unclear. TechCruch speculates that since Analytics does not yet have the "real time" feature that Blogger Stats does, Google will possibly roll up Stats into Analytics. On the other hand, information they gleaned from various Analytics support forums show that Google is convinced users don't want real time stats, and would rather focus on more robust and complete time lagged analysis.
For now, the service is only available if you login to Blogger using the draft.Blogger.com portal, the site where Blogger tests various new blogging tools not yet ready for production.