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Eric Schmidt says his company is naturally controversial, but that its top priority is giving its customers the best product at any cost.  (Source: Reuters)

Among Google's biggest enemies now are the Chinese government and Apple, Inc.  (Source: Boy Genius Report)
Google isn't afraid to stir the pot

Eric Schmidt knows very well that Google is no stranger to controversy.  In a talk with reporters at Google's headquarters, he responded to a question about Google's strengths and weaknesses, stating, "Every government sort of has some group that's busy trying to figure out what we're up to. Because information is power.  We're quite disruptive, and in the course of that disruption we tend to create enemies, which are hopefully not intended on our part."

Google, is among the most powerful companies in America today, yet it has numerous enemies.  Among those "enemies" include the world's largest nation, China.

The EU and the U.S., while supportive of Google's stand against China, have taken a wary eye to Google's growing marketshare.  The United States Federal Trade Commission is currently investigating Google and trying to figure out whether its acquisition of AdMob for $750M USD will hurt competition.

The California company also has corporate enemies.  Among the most powerful is Apple, which has begun suing handset makers of Google's Android smart phones over violations of iPhone related patents.  Apple also plans to challenge Google in mobile advertising market, announcing the inclusion of in-app ads in the coming iPhone OS 4.0.  And there's some rumors Apple will even launch its own search engine in the next few years.

Still Google continues to find tremendous success in a variety of new areas.  Among Google's more recent conquests is paid productivity software (à la Microsoft Office).  Google has for some time now offered free versions of its productivity software to the public online.  Now it is selling enhanced versions of the software to the company.  

It charges $50 per user per year for access to all its professional apps, including word processing and Gmail.  Currently the company has racked up a couple million subscribers.  And it's adding 3,000 new ones a day.

Still, Google's core business and biggest source of controversy remains its use of search and data mining to deliver smarter ads to consumers.  That business earns Google most of $24B USD in revenue it made last year.



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I think...
By Landiepete on 4/14/2010 4:50:20 AM , Rating: 2
Companies making as much money as google are per definition disruptive.
Not only because of their size and turnover (they can cause havoc by simply uttering an intention or strategy), but, in my opinion, because of their business model.
Since the backbone of capitalism is growth, google must continue to grow. Because growing within your activities becomes harder as you get bigger (double figure growth when you already own serious market real estate is exceedingly hard), they broaden their scope.
So in order to expand, they develop some new initiatives, but also look at the market, see what works and what doesn't, and try to grab some of it.
The M.O. google has been using for a while is to look around at what works, throw a truckload of cash at it and start doing it for free.
This forces smaller companies, that often have everything AND the kitchen sink invested in something, to abandon their activities, or at least prevent them from developing new ones. You simply cannot compete with a company that has so much cash to burn that it effectively does not impact their existing business.
Just my 2c, really.




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