It is being reported that Apple will be ditching Google in China and replacing it with Baidu as the default search engine. Baidu is the dominant search engine provider in China with a market share estimated at 78%, while Google doesn’t even come close to that number.
Apple’s new operating system will integrate various popular Chinese Internet services – this will make it more attractive for consumers. This will further weaken Google in China, which is a huge loss for the company because the Chinese market is a very attractive one. Apple is making it even more difficult for Google to get its foot in the door. Apple also plans to ditch Google as the default search engine on mobile devices in China.
Recently, it was also reported that Apple ditched Google Maps and is now using a free crowdsourcing mapping service for its mobile devices. It looks like the battle between Apple and Google is getting even more intense and Google is losing.
For more information:
ITProPortal, “Apple To Replace Google With Baidu For The Chinese Market” – click here
DailyFinance, “Are Apple and Baidu About to Team Up on Google?” – click here
googleexposed, “Apple Tells Google Maps To Take A Hike” – click here
Today’s must read article comes from Gizmodo’s Mat Honan who published a post titled “The Case Against Google”. It’s a pretty comprehensive and an excellent article which reminds you of just how much Google has changed and fallen. Google is no longer the same company it once was and it’s willing to say or do anything to maximize its profits. I urge you to go and read Mat Honan’s article in its entirety. Here are some of the highlights:
“The bottom line: People don’t trust Google with their data. And that’s new.”
“Google is a fundamentally different company than it has been in the past. Its culture and direction have changed radically in the past 18 months”
“But there’s a remarkably simple explanation: Search is no longer Google’s core product.”
“There is only one path to that answer, and it goes straight through your privacy. Google can’t deliver this kind of a tailored result if you’re using all kinds of other services that it doesn’t control. Nor can it do it if you keep your Google services separated. You have to do all the things you used to do elsewhere within the confines of one big information sharing service called Google.”
“Google wants to know things about you that you aren’t already telling it so you will continue asking it questions and it can continue serving ads against the questions you ask it. So, it feels like it has to herd people into using Google+ whether they want to go there or not.”
“This explains why Google has been driving privacy advocates crazy and polluting its search results. It explains why now, on the Google homepage, there’s a big ugly black bar across the top that reminds you of all its properties. It explains the glaring red box with the meaningless numbers that so desperately begs you to come see what’s happening in its anti-social network. It explains why Google is being a bully. It explains why Google broke search: Because to remain relevant it has to give real-world answers.”
“What happens if, ten years from now, Google drastically changes again? Will you still be able to wipe yourself from Google’s drives? Will there be a massive, or incremental policy shift? Will it secretly keep bits of you, just as it has secretly tracked bits of you, against your wishes? If Google is already going back on some of its initial promises, what comes next? If it can break one, can’t it break them all?”
“Google is far bigger now, and far less susceptible to the whims of the public. But I hope that, to some extent, it is still listening. Because the case against Google is for the first time starting to outweigh the case for it.”
“If it can’t keep its promises, if it can’t avoid resorting to trickery, if it can’t keep itself from subverting the power of its search engine for commercial ends, and on top of all that if it can’t even deliver the highest quality search results at a default setting—the most basic thing people have come to expect from Google, the very thing its name has become synonymous with—why should you trust it with your personal data?”
Stafford Masie was the head of Google South Africa up until 2009 and his recent candid confession about Google’s increasing troubles has got to be making top executives at Google’s headquarters cringing. Mr. Masie was speaking at a technology awards show in South Africa last Thursday when he spoke openly about what he feels is evolving in the technology world and what is running out of steam.
Mr. Masie explained that he feels that Google’s traditional way of doing search is slowly dying and there is no future for it. He said that people are doing more of their searches on social media websites and not the traditional way they used to depend exclusively on search engines. Mr. Masie attempted to backtrack his very blunt statement about Google’s future by saying that he does not think Google, as a whole, is dying but rather Google’s search is becoming increasingly useless in a changing world. Despite his efforts to backtrack a bit on his statement, he probably made it worse – that’s because Google IS search.
That’s even how the company sells itself and how the media has been selling Google for years now. Google is often called the leader of search – the “search giant”! To many, Google might actually be synonymous with the word “search” itself. So for Mr. Masie to say that traditional search is dying, he’s essentially saying that Google, as a whole, is doomed.
Has much as Mr. Masie’s very honest comment about Google’s business will make his former bosses very uncomfortable, he is not alone in thinking that Google’s best years are more or less behind it. In fact, if you examine the recent changes Google has made, even Google would agree that its business is changing – but I think it is safe to assume that they probably would not use the same words as Mr. Masie.
Google, last summer, came out with its copycat version of Facebook. This was a clear attempt to try to gain on Facebook’s lead but Google so far does not stand a chance against the social networking juggernaut. Google executives have admitted on numerous occasions that they missed the boat with social media. Now that social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter are attracting huge attention, Google is extremely worried.
Google knows that the future of search and interaction is going to be intertwined with social networking. It also knows that advertisers are flocking away to Twitter and Facebook to spend their money on those websites which offer a more direct connection to their potential customers. Without the support of advertisers, Google is dead, finished, done, hasta la vista, put on a fork in it, sayanora! Over 90% of Google’s revenues depend heavily on advertising.
Now, Google is desperate to make their copycat website of Facebook, which they call “Google Plus”, a success. CEO of Google, Larry Page, desperately wants to beat Mark Zuckerberg, who’s the founder of Facebook. There are already stories all over the media about how these two men are fierce enemies – describing Google’s Page as the out-of-touch aged search giant ‘geek’ and Facebook’s Zuckerberg as the fresh new talent out to make the world more connected.
Larry Page has made Google Plus a number one priority now – which, quite frankly, is too little too late. Mr. Page wants Google Plus to be an “extension” of Google itself – meaning that they no longer want Google to be that place that quickly sends people off to the destination they were searching for, but rather now they want people to spend time on Google much longer. Google wants to keep you on their websites and have you share your personal information with them so they can sell it to advertisers. So they definitely recognize that their traditional way of doing business is indeed dying.
To read the article by Jan Vermeulen on this story, you can click here
I came across a fantastic article, by Keith Woolcock of Time Magazine, which describes how Google is fading away as business. The article raises many superb points about Google’s weak business model and how companies like Facebook are changing the way the Internet works.
I have written about this here in earlier posts myself, where I described how Facebook is essentially a walled garden that is closing off its private data about its users from Google’s robotic Internet crawlers. If Google cannot access Facebook’s data, then Google becomes useless.
I highly recommend you read the article for yourself, click here