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Google “Instant Pages” for Chrome tells more about direction than features

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This could also be titled, “How Larry Page is starting to run Google more like Steve Jobs would.”

Google has operated in many ways like Microsoft and other tech companies that are going after a bunch of things at once. It worked for them better than most, but there were still too many failures and distractions to keep the company from achieving its goals. Things have changed with Larry Page at the helm and as a result, the company seems more focused.

It seems more like Apple.

The latest addition to the Google feature list is Instant Pages for Chrome. The concept is very simple – when a user does a search and Google is confident that the first result on the search is the one that the searcher is looking for, they begin preloading it into Chrome making it appear instantly when clicked. Here’s the video. The analysis of what it represents follows:

Google is first and foremost a search company. They have been outwardly neutral over the years, claiming that the algorithm that they use and the way they present results are not self-serving. This year and specifically under Page, Google has shifted towards being more aggressive with promotions of their own products and services while using other services as a hook.

In this case, the product is Chrome. Outwardly it would seem that it make sense – Chrome is theirs and it’s easier to develop technology on one’s own platform. In reality, that’s not the whole truth. Google could very easily test this on Chrome and roll out the product as eventually available on any browser. The devil is in the details.

Google has been promoting Chrome’s speed for a while. This adds to that. It’s subtle, but Google in the past would roll out this type of product on Chrome first, mentioning how it’s starting there and focusing the video on the service itself. This time, they are making it very clear that this is a service specifically designed for Chrome, mentioning that it will be pre-installed.

The distinction is small but it goes towards understanding the general Apple-esque shift in the way Google is doing things. Everything that they’ve been pushing out over the last few months from Google+ to Google Places changes have been clearly focused on promoting Google products and services. That wasn’t the case in the past when Google was trying to be a neutral, do-no-evil company.

Are they “doing more evil” now? No. They’re just making better business moves. Page is running the company much more like how Jobs runs Apple.

  1. Really?  Comparing a minor add on for a browser that most people don’t use is like an iPod or iPhone?

    Remember..Karry Page is also responsible for Google+ which is turning out to be the next Wave or Buzz with people signing up and never coming back.  (Hence, the drop in page views over the last two weeks.)

  2. I originally fell in love for Google years ago because they were a neutral company; idealistic and simple.  That is no longer the case.

    I have given up my Gmail this past year in option of a home-based mail server since I have stopped trusting Google; they have begun being more aggressive.  Aggressive to me means pushing the boundries of our tolerance and being less tolerant of  their competition.  I can no longer trust this company and I do not want to support that.

    Evil or not, Google is no longer that “do no evil” company.  Just like Apple, Google is becoming a sociopathic company that is more about the bottom line than striving to be empathic and open. 

    I know it is not a company’s place to be empathic, but that is what I loved about Google originally.  C’est la vie

    1. Yeay, right. don’t trust Google, home server bla bla.
      your one in a billion.
      Every company exists to make money. full stop.
      If you pay Google for something, your a customer, if they give stuff to you for free, then they are selling you on to someone else as a product – you become a product for sale.
      All companies do it, that’s life. get over it.

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