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October 4, 2007

New Study Looks at Google IP as Analog to Company Aims

For those in the corporate world who either love and/or fear Google, a new study is available that examines Google through the patents the company owns.  Google 2.0, The Calculating Predator by Stephen Arnold details an analysis of the company's business strategies by viewing the patents it holds.  Google, apparently, doesn't file for patents under its own name which makes the search that much harder.  The book is not for the casual reader but priced for the corporate world where similar studies are in the several hundred to several thousand dollar range.  This book (electronic form only) is no exception ($640 US for 270 pages).  Still, the premise of studying Google's aims by analyzing its IP portfolio is interesting. 

News articles speculating on Google's appetite for technology offerings that go beyond search and advertising certainly put a scare into a wide variety of competitors.  The potential for Google to operate a fiber and/or wireless network coupled with an Google phone (or maybe down the line, an variant of the iPhone?) has certainly but AT&T and Verizon in a tizzy.  Microsoft certainly must feel some competitive heat from Google Apps in spite of their public statements.  What must scare these companies most is not that Google will compete with them, but that Google has a different mindset when it comes to offering and valuing competing services. 

If, for example, Google offers phone service that is low cost or free in return for ads on a wireless phone, than what is the real value of phone service to AT&T and Verizon, et al.?  Or especially to their customers?  But the moment a company such as Google gives away a service where another company earns a decent financial return because that second company defines the market, well, big changes will be coming.  These may not be pleasant changes for the incumbents.  Just ask Netscape about how that works.

Details about the study are here.

October 4, 2007 | Permalink

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