Last night, there was quite the buzz in the blogosphere over Google Chrome, the Google, open-source browser that is going to compete with Internet Explorer, Firefox, Opera, and Safari. There are all types of opportunities that everyone see where Google can (potentially) add value, in conjunction with their other applications, cloud computing, and search engine monster. In just over 24 hours before Techcrunch scooped the screenshots, there were over 1,000 stories within 24 hours, without anyone being able to download it (although now you can download it at google.com/chrome).
Although some are less than impressed with this release, and I am in agreement with Hank’s take on this. Despite this, I must say that there is something else that concerned me about this product release.
Google is the classic “frienemy”, but always seems to escape that bad PR that should come with competing against business partners. For those of you that do not know, Google has just re-signed a three year partnership deal with the makers of Firefox to be the default search bar on their browser. In the past, Google has been the major revenue source for Mozilla. Were they aware of the Google Browser when they signed this deal? Can they be trusted?
The New York Times today has an article on Google’s frienemy status, and I just don’t know how they avoid any negative PR for slowly turning into the monster that competes with all of their product partners, something that Microsoft has always been unable to do. I guess classifying it as “open-source” will make everyone feel that Google isn’t directly competing, but we’ll see how long this happens. I don’t know if Google Chrome is evil, but it sure shows me that Google is slowly assembling a massive army to be the backbone of the internet. Google Chrome is a purported Web operating system, so let’s see how much development they have six months from know. Even their supposed Wikipedia killer, Google Knol, seems more and more like a spamfest than an actually replacement for Wikipedia. Chalk this up to the big-hype, let’s see how this goes category.