Google manages to keep pipeline flowing despite reported mojo shortage

Only time will tell if they’re prescient, premature or full of poop, but there’s been a recent spate of cautionary and slightly bearish commentaries lately to the effect that the first chinks in Google’s armor are starting to show, that it has lost its mojo, that it is showing the predictable signs of an organization moving into the end of the “S curve.” Somehow, Google has retained its composure in the face of such talk, continuing to experiment in search, roll new services out the door and expand on ambitions that range from the airwaves to well below the ocean’s waves.

* In beta for a mere (by Google standards) five months, Google Ad Manager is now open to all Web publishers who have an AdSense account. Ad Manager is designed to give smaller businesses a simple, hosted solution for scheduling, managing and tracking network-based or directly sold ad units for maximum return. As usual, for every move Google makes into a new service, an incumbent leader is nominated as Most Likely to Suffer, and in this case, the lucky winner is OpenX, which does the same sort of thing as Ad Manager, except that it needs to be hosted on the user’s server and it can’t automatically have AdSense manage unsold or third-party inventory. On the other hand, says TechCrunch, maybe this makes OpenX ripe for acquisition by a Google competitor.

* After a much more Google-like incubation period of almost four years (!), Google Suggest has finally become a default feature of the home-page search box. The drop-down menu that offers likely keywords as you type began life as one of those 20 percent projects in 2004, and over time was incorporated into the Google Toolbar, the Firefox search box, Google Maps, YouTube, the iPhone and the BlackBerry, so you’re excused if you assumed, as I did, that it had made it to the home page long ago.

* The Android Guys open-handset news and rumor site got its hands on what it swears are accurate design drawings of the first phone based on Google’s mobile operating system, the HTC Dream, aka the T-Mobile G1, expected this fall (see “Android phone clears last hurdle, heads to finish line“). The artwork shows a screen that slides up to reveal a QWERTY keyboard with space between the buttons and, in a distinctive flourish, a slight banana bend in the silhouette that may encourage some men to keep it in a front pants pocket. The site has also been collecting spec information of varying reliability over the course of the day. Meantime, the Android team announced two elements that won’t make it into Version 1.0: GTalk chat, for security concerns, and an API that would have given developers access to a device’s Bluetooth functionality, because “we plain ran out of time.” Bluetooth itself remains supported.

* However much mojo Google has left, it still takes some big pipes to carry it all, which explains the search sovereign’s interest in improving the telecommunications infrastructure along the floor of the Pacific. In February, Google joined a consortium of telecoms in backing the Unity trans-Pacific cable project, connecting the U.S. and Japan. Now, reports TeleGeography, Google has hooked up with many of the same carriers to build out the Southeast Asia Japan Cable, which would connect the Unity terminus in Japan to Guam, Hong Kong, the Philippines, Thailand and Singapore.


Share this Post

  • deegee

    “banana bend” LMAO. Portends a whole new feature set for mobile devices!

  • billpk4

    as with the shortfall of gmail sans any reasonable featureset to compete with Outlook (contact manager is poor, no task management, etc…), how well will the G1 work with Outlook and the other MS Suite of Office products.

    will G1 be suitable for the corporate/business world… or simply another mp3 and video phone that can do fancy text messaging with the added benefit of the user being overwhelmed with onscreen advertising.