Google is the Next Microsoft

By Eric Larson
November 16, 2008 | Comments: 7

I'm going to ahead and say it, Google is the next Microsoft. Microsoft played a very important role in changing the way the world thought of computers by helping to place a computer in practically everyone's reach. Google has effectively done the same thing in terms of the Internet. Before Google, the web was a vast sea of information that was unmanageable and unfathomable. Now, movies are simply providing search terms.

Search has become commonplace. I suspect there will eventually be a Linux of search and it is arguable that there already is. The big question is what will be the next big paradigm shift that will define the next Google. My bet is it will be mobile, even though I've never been a fan of small devices. What do you think? Where will computers and technology go thanks to the next Google?


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7 Comments

So, Google will be the next MS?

Is this intended to become the next History for complete ignorants lesson? Something like 'The US will be the next Roman Empire' or 'We are entering an age where money will dictate everything'
Google and MS have many more differences than similiarities in the same ways as the US would need about 1000 years more time and 10 times more impact on history or culture to be really comparable to the Romans. You can argue that flying fish will be the new birds but, in fact, this is an almost useless notion.
MS and Google sit on opposite ends of the spectrum in terms of company culture, pressure on vendors, arrogance towards customers, political influcence or even market image. The differences are much bigger than any similarities.
Just comparing market shares leads us nowhere (its like asking who will be the next Intel or the next Porsche in terms of processor or car design)

So, eventually , what is your point? Maybe flying fish will be the new birds but the question should be asked in 2-3 million years from now to make any sense.

I think you are reading a little too much into the comparison. As you point out, Microsoft and Google are very different companies. They are obviously not the "same" by any stretch of the imagination. My point was not to suggest they are the same as companies, but that their status and existence represents similar milestones in technology. As Microsoft has been considered the monopoly in desktop PCs, Google has gained the same status in terms of search, which has landed them the position of Homepage for the Web.

Obviously, this is not an absolute and many other entities play a huge part in how people use the web. I'm not saying that Google is the internet, but the fact that some proportion of people do, is similar to how a large proportion of people believe Microsoft Windows is simply a "computer" or "PC".

How did Microsoft help put a computer on everyone's desk, though? Neither Windows nor DOS were the sine qua non of ubiquitous desktops, in my experience (nor was MS Office dominant in word processing or spreadsheets at the tipping point).

I'm not suggesting Microsoft is the single reason that computers have become as prevalent as they are, but rather they represent that prevalence. There is obviously not a simple logical relationship between Microsoft and the rise of the desktop PC, but it is also obvious that many users associate a PC (I'm a PC) with Microsoft and Windows.

Hi Eric - An interesting thought. There's certainly a lifecycle for any company, no matter how dominant. I alluded to this with regard to monopolistic competition in the software industry when Google released Chrome.

http://scottsambucci.blogspot.com/2008/09/viva-monopolies.html

No doubt about it Google is the new Microsoft....But in my view the results will be far worse than what has happened with the MS monopoly...

Both Gog and MS are non open source closed companies..They both want to be the "standard" for the new part of the stack that they each wanted/want to create....Both Gog and Ms wow developers with the wow aint it cool be build stuff for us feel good smoke screen...all the while that developers are feeling good about being cool building on non open standards....they help two companies achieve un heard of monopoly positions and as well as billions in revenue...none of which will be given back to the developers, content owners that helped to put them in their grand positions...The danger with Gog is that with MS you had a choice to buy another computer or to use another OS....As Gog moves closer to becoming the "Standard" for the internet crushing co opting developers and content to crush competitors we face a dark time of having no other options; but to use their services..

I'm curious to see if Google will be the next Microsoft by ossifying its business and losing its technological edge. With the recent news of a hiring freeze and deadwood cleaning at Google, it looks like they are ready for Google 2.0 where they have to act like a real business. They did well when it was easy to sell advertising, but now it's time to see if they do well when it's harder to sell advertising. What else might show up on their 10K this year?

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