Google Inc., probably the most enigmatic company on Earth today is rumored to have pressed the Facebook panic button with its up and coming Google Me social network, that is if internet rumors are to be believed.
It is very surprising that a company the size of Google with its vast array of products and services still lags behind in the social networking realm. Given services like Blogger, Picasa, Youtube among others, one would expect Google to be at the heart of social networking. That unfortunately is not the case.
One factor that I strongly believe has contributed to this is Google’s inorganic growth. Whether it is part of their corporate growth strategy to grow inorganically, I’m not so sure. But it seems the divergent business services that Google has acquired over the years don’t seem to somehow integrate well into one unified whole.
And there are times when I wonder if Google actually takes some of its own products that serious. For instance, in this slideshow by Paul Adams of UX, where he talks about how people use social media, I find that he hardly makes any reference to Orkut, instead preferring to use Facebook.
There needs to be some form of convergent of services from Google into more or less one user interface. This is essentially what “social networking” is all about: having the plethora of services I use to keep in touch with friends packaged together. If this is what Google Me is going to be, all the better.
I’d like to log into Orkut and have my friends activites on Buzz, Youtube, blog posts from Blogger, see any changes to their Profiles all streaming onto the current interface. This is where the problem will come in though. Who then heads what? To what extent is there going to be overlapping in duties?
Growing by buying potentially viable businesses is a great way to expand, but can result in some form of disintegrated pieces of the same company which might not auger well in the long run. It would be very interesting to see a well organized (for lack of a better term) Google come out to challenge the increasing popularity of Facebook.