Who’ll Take On Google?

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Robert X. Cringely, in his I, Cringely, blog at PBS writes about the final days of Google. This is sort of what I’ve been saying: that the company who’ll take on Google hasn’t come into existence yet, or at least haven’t revealed themselves. I figure we will know in the next 4 years, that they’ll reveal themselves in that time frame. They may come into existence in, say, 2, but we may not realize their power. Did anyone think that of Google? I used to be a search engine webmaster and my money was on Excite, a competitor.

However, Cringely gives a brilliant, must-read analysis of why he thinks the ursurpers will come from within the ranks of Google itself, unlike the past, with IBM and Microsoft. I’d normally not think this, but with Google stockpiling so much talent and being supportive of employees to pursue ideas, it’s quite possible. But IBM has long-supported creative ideas. What’s the difference here? Read Cringely to find out.

Ultimately, I don’t agree, for reasons I will never divulge online. (Oooh, conspiracy.) I will say, in lieu, though, that Cringely’s hypothesis is based on the assumption that all the thinkers in the world work only for Google, that there’s no one with any brains anywhere else – which is obviously not true. The usurpers, to my recollection, have never come “from within”, and I really think that “this time” wil not be any different. There’s also an implicit assumption that you absolutely must have a lot of capital to defeat Google, and I don’t think that this is a necessity, if they have an innovative idea – one that will probably bring the world closer together, enhancing the global village.

Due to the expected surge in the mobile space, I strongly believe that the next contender for world tech domination will come from that domain. It’ll likely be a company that comes up with some extremely innovative technology for mobile phones/ PDAs that will impress enough users to help build yet another seeming monopoly. And they’ll go on a buying binge just like IBM, Microsoft and Google did, eating up smaller companies having great technology.

While European or Asian companies might stand a chance at the usurper role for a mobile technology, I still think that the new emperor will be an American company, or a Canadian one with American backing (I’m Canadian).

If you force me to be specific, I’ll say VoIP/ WiFi/ cellular convergence combined with presence/ following, RFID/ NFC-enabled payments, mobile video, environmental sensors for crowdsensing applications. Or, at least, those are the peripheral aspects. In this case, I think “the company” will come up with the “ideal” mobile communications platform. They might start with mobile local search, make it a hit, then start buying up the other technologies, as necessary. For this reason, the usurper might even be a mobile phone manufacturer with a scalable applications platform. What do you think?

Venn diagram - Usurping Google

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  • joeshmoe

    This really is meant to be constructive criticism but Raj you really are over-doing your way with *very* simple and yes even *stupid* little venn diagrams that I used to do in my school. You got to make them more interesting and more of this generation and cool to be on a blog like this. Your diagrams style at least, if not the content, seems very kiddish and old-school!

  • Raj Dash

    JoeShmoe: Read the little note that says “Note: Purely tongue in cheek”. And my apologies if you think my diagrams are old-school. Kiddish AND old-school. Don’t know what that means. Maybe you’re just smarter than the rest of us. The diagram in my last post was also meant to be humorous.

    Don’t think I’ve ever seen ANY SEO blog other than SEOMoz doing much in the way of diagrams, to explain things visually to noobs. So if you’d bothered to have a link to your site, maybe you could show me how it should be done.

  • Loren Baker, Editor

    Hey Raj, nice diagram. Don’t let the naysayers wear you down. Your diagrams are appreciated by a lot of readers 🙂

  • Raj Dash

    Thanks, Loren. It really was meant to be a humorous commentary on Cringeley’s post, not a work of art.

    Note to future detractors: Please use your real name and even a link to your site. I’ll have a lot more respect for your opinion if you do. If you’re going to criticize, I’m happy to learn, if you give a good alternate example.

    If you want to see diagrams, check out the Bootstrapper blog that I write for someone. Is that a bit more new-school with the diagrams? If so, then I’ll try to do more of that style here at SEJ.

  • CarstenCumbrowski

    Hey Raj, good post and I only saw one typo with my limited knowledge of the English language hehe.

    Don’t worry about the cowardly comment. Some people believe that anonymity is necessary to be able to disagree and express that disagreement publicly.

    Your graphics is beating SEOMoz sketches by light years. Some of Rand’s creation require an illustration to illustrate the illustration hehe.

  • Dan

    Those graphs are USAToday Quality!

  • Archi (SEO Expert)

    you have tried to show in well manner……good job

  • Raj Dash

    Hey guys, thanks. Now I’m all embarrassed. Carsten, thanks – i’ll have to obsessively scour the article again to find that typo.

    I really like Rand’s diagrams at SEOmoz and am often jealous I didn’t do them first 🙂

  • Raj Dash

    Now, where do you think Google’s usurper will come from, or will they be the last (tech) emperor?

  • CarstenCumbrowski

    I saw two major dethronement’s in my life, which I believed to be impossible.

    1. the east German government by its own people without a single shot being fired.

    2. Microsoft by Google in the web and to some degree desktop game. A feat I would not have believed just some years earlier, when Microsoft “killed” the superior OS/2 Warp by “Big Blue” IBM.

    1. was done from the inside
    2. was done from the outside

    What does it tell you? Both is possible.
    That is my unscientific argumentation hehe.


  • Raj Dash

    Carsten: Great observation. So who knows what’s coming 🙂