Yup, that’s my question to Larry Page and Sergey Brin. I really would like to have written this in an email to them, but well can’t find their address the easy way, so I thought I’d share it with you guys.
Google+. A name synonymous for getting excited at first and then dust it out. Yes neither have you used much of Google+. I was wondering when I got the invite why has Google not get rid of Buzz. Well it turns out Google haven’t planned much except releasing a product that “plusses on Facebook’s minusses”. Google+ has been a story of it competing with Facebook head on. It was an exciting thing at first, the fact that many people were dying to get the invites. But the moment I got it I knew Facebook has heaved a sigh of relief. Here was a chance Google had in upping the ante in the Social networking business, and they bombed it just like US in Iraq. Even a Google employee hit out against Google+. I’ll leave all the shortcomings and failed promises of Google+ to this article   .
I rather would like to ask Google – What now? Yes, Google is known for a lot of experimentation. And with experimentation there will be lots of failures and some success. Luckily this some success turned out to be good enough to succumb to failures (read search, Gmail, Android, AdMobs etc). One thing that’s not in Google’s kitty is Social networking. It’s many attempts – Wave, Buzz, Google+, only seem to confuse users more than ever. Make no mistake, all these are good products, some even great (I do use buzz, which still seems a relevant feature). And Google+ did bring some nice features. Hangout is a great idea, I like the concept very much. Circles is a good stuff (animation is real slick) and adding friends is so damn easy. Real easy! And the interface is pretty slick, I like the top bar that comes in every Google site and the notifications the way they are organized and pop up. All these are great. But unfortunately (or fortunately? more coming up) it flopped and is on the downhill. Maybe it can beat wave faster to being exterminated! However I really hope this doesn’t happen and Google does have time to recover, hell lots of time to recover!
What Google should do now is learn from the mistakes and look ahead with clear head and focus. Focus is key and the focus would be to build a nice ecosystem. I say that with a lot of emphasis. It’s of utmost importance to Google now and it actually might be the best time to start thinking about. What I feel Google should do is instead of competing with the Social Networking giants like Facebook and Twitter, why not promote them? Why not help making them better. Why not join hands with them and build a richer ecosystem that would benefit them all? What I see here is that each (Google, Facebook, Twitter) have a different great working models and ideas in their kitty and that they will be a real force when gelled together. I love to see a future when android phones are deeply integrated with facebook and twitter and we would be using all these services in our daily routine! Yeah such a co-existence would take some time to nurture, but then Google has lots in their hands to do. First thing is don’t even think about shelling out Google+. Instead integrate it with every other Google product. Why not have hangouts integrated into Gmail? Why not see what other people have searched similar to your query? Why not make a messaging service (though it’s there, but not ubiquitous) that just works like in iOS?
People do use a lot of GMail, though majority would be nudging through their Facebook walls to see what their buddies are up to. All I’m suggesting here is stop thinking about what other people are doing and how to counteract them. Start building your own cool stuff, Google. GMail was and is one of the best emailing services that everyone has started using. AdMobile is doing a really great job that others just forget about competing against. Android is being phenomenal in the number of devices being activated and the pure brute power the latest versions of the OS will bring. And the new ideas are real cool, like android@home, ChromeOS for netbooks. And how can I forget – Search. Google search is something so awesome and “I can’t live without it” thing that people have forgotten to use the word “search” for “google it out”! I mean this is what makes Google so Google! And Google is still a really great and respected company. I just don’t want it to lose steam, which by the current crop of releases, is. 😦
I do wonder why I write this post. Why waste time on this. But I really like Google and I really hate to see Google getting a bit ashamed of what they are doing. Well, it’s part and parcel of life (Hello, even Apple after 1999 had those, remember Ping?). And what worries me is the fact that Google really doesn’t have a platform, rather an ecosystem on which others can rely Google upon. Many companies have started to realize that, but Google still won’t look into this direction. I guess it’s Google realizes this and head out to a new direction of wonder and glory and all the crazy and cool stuff that Google is going to invent and make. Google, I am sure, is going to be one the companies that will lead us to the future. But Google, listen ok? 😛