catallaxy files

catallaxy in technical exile

Googzilla 2: Google vs Microsoft (And Yahoo? And the telcos?)

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In addition to it’s Google video store, Google also used CES to announce it’s Google Pack. The “Google Pack” is a bundle of software from Google and a number of partners. According to the Google press release, it’s designed to

“give users a way to painlessly install all the essential software they need – pre-configured in a sensible way – in a matter of minutes.”

The software bundled includes a web browser (Firefox), instant messaging & VoIP clients (Trillian and Google Talk), security products (Norton Anti-Virus, Ad-Aware personal edition) and a number of other applications including the Google toolbar , Realplayer and Adobe Acrobat Reader. The Google Pack software will automatically update all the installed applications for the user.

In terms of setting up a new PC, the Google Pack does provide a lot of the basic software that a new user is going to need – with a couple of gaps. Leaving aside the absence of Windows Media Player, the pack probably still needs to add a software firewall and Flash (unless this is included with Firefox?).

Then of course there is the absence of any ‘office’ package, despite Google’s partnership with Sun on Open Office. Google reportedly didn’t respond on this issue, but I’m going with the Forrester analyst Charlene Li, who argued that it was because Google wanted to keep things simple this time around so Open Office was left out.

So who should feel threatened by the Google pack? Whilst most people are talking about is Microsoft, and to a lesser extent Yahoo!. there is a less obvious group of companies that should feel threatened by Google’s latest move. That group is the ISPs of the world. At a time when many ISPs are looking to the value-added services (VAS) such as security products, to top up their access revenues or build customer stickiness, along comes Google to offer all these goodies for free and independent of peoples broadband/telco provider.

So where does this leave the ISPs? One option is to partner with Google, perhaps mimicking the existing alliances that ISPs have formed with Yahoo! and MSN (e.g. BT Yahoo! and Sympatico MSN). Those that choose not to partner with Google will need to give customers a good reason to chose them for their VAS supplier. Since it won’t be price – this is going to have to be something else such as service, quality of service or perhaps convenience – such as single billing for all your online content/VAS needs.

So roll on the Google Pack, and the Google Video Store – Googzilla’s on the hunt.

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Written by Admin

January 12, 2006 at 9:23 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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