How does Google continue to outdo Microsoft?

Creating a title that does not exactly reveal what an editorial is going to consist of, while at the same time getting the user to begin reading it without yelling “sensationalist journalism!” is probably an art that I will never master. So, what exactly did Google do for me to conclude that it outdid Microsoft? For starters, in this editorial I could examine how Google essentially forced Microsoft to change the desktop search and indexing feature in Windows Vista SP1. On the other hand, I could discuss how the search giant continues, year after year, to beat the largest software maker in the field of web search. What I find the most intriguing, however, are the last 6 months consisting of Google avoiding every single attempt Microsoft has thrown at the search leader to stop its intimidating expansion in the online advertising world.

We know that the money made from boasting the world’s most popular search engine, or any search engine for that matter, comes from advertising. It therefore follows that Google is the top dog in the search online advertising market. 6 months ago, Google may have dominated the online advertising market, but now it has the potential to essentially govern it. In April, Google moved to purchase DoubleClick, big number one in the non-search online advertising market, for $3.1 billion. The two largest online advertising distributors were about to become one. Given Google’s leading position and the fact that DoubleClick specializes on serving banners and other display ads on prominent Web sites, it is not surprising that competitors were not pleased. Days later, Microsoft publically asked the American government to block the purchase.

Yahoo, TimeWarner and Microsoft were outbid by Google against all odds. In early May, Yahoo announced plans to pay $680 million for the remaining 80% it did not yet own of Right Media, which operated an online advertising exchange, and rumours about Microsoft buying Internet ad firm 24/7 Real Media for about $1 billion began to emerge. In August, Microsoft paid a whopping $6 billion for digital marketing company aQuantive. Fortunately for Google, despite its two main competitors paying more than double combined, the acquired companies just weren’t even remotely equivalent to the search leader’s accomplishment. Google simply did not have the financial backing to outbid Microsoft. And yet, somehow, the smaller company convinced DoubleClick to take its side.

Microsoft, along with a slew of other companies, got together right after Google announced its success and demanded that the deal be stopped as the purchase would result in Google having an anti-competitive death grip on the online advertising market. On top of that, in response to protests from various privacy groups, the FTC launched an antitrust investigation into the merger in May. In late September, the European Commission also decided to become interested in Google’s plans. An incredible amount of opposition erupted over the last half-year, but there has not been any news that would signify that Microsoft’s (and the many in agreement with the software giant’s stance) efforts have not been fruitless. Various organizations with the authority to do so, collectively or single-handedly, have yet to tell Google to take back its 3.1 billion.

In late September, Google announced plans to hire thousands of engineers in Europe to make Google's European operations equivalent in size to those in the United States. In early October, the German state of Schleswig-Holstein notified the European Union about privacy issues regarding the marriage of Google and DoubleClick. Less than two weeks later, the European Union announced it would not bother with verifying possible privacy issues that the union might result in and would only focus on competition aspects of the deal. Microsoft has had to pay the EU over €750 million for being anti-competitive, while so far, despite pleas from governments, privacy groups and companies including Microsoft, Google has eluded any sort of monetary compensation with its currently most lucrative and arguably monopolistic acquisition.

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They are both mulit billion dollar companies out to make thier shareholders richer, thats about all. this is just how it is and how it ahs alwasy been, there isnothign new in any of this article, besides the smae old stuff we have all known for years.

google didn't force MS to do anything, MS did what it did to survive, your title shoudl read google still outodes MS in the online search and marketing market. everythign else MS still wins.

Google is synonomous with being the leading search provider. Everyone I know doesn't "search" for something on the internet, they "Google it". I rest my case.

Microsoft stealing and not giving credit. But Google's an angel? Don't think so.

Google isn't even a tenth the size or power of Microsoft. It's a search engine company, nothing more.

Wow, Google offers multiple GBs of e-mail space. Wow, so you can hold 5000000000000000 e-mails. Who gives a ****. The average user need not more than 5 MB of space for personal usage. I could care less if it's 5 MB or 5 TB. Giving space away is easy because it's so cheap. They are not doing anyone a big favor.

Until Google comes out with their own office suite or operating system, don't compare them with Microsoft. It's apples and oranges.

Google isn't really outdoing Microsoft in much but searching, everything else Google has is kinda medocer with small programs that have limited functionality... even google maps, albeit popular, is highly out of date in most regions... live earth seems to be about a year old map wise in most areas... google seems to be about 5 to 10 years in most and doesn't even have high res arial photos in most areas... just higher populated ones... except for some exceptions...

I Love google for gmail, before they came out with that, the average free email account had 25MB of space :\ that was so annoying, I love that we get multiple gigs now

I really think a lot of it is just the perspective each company takes on things.

Google's focus seems to be do their thing, and continue to make it better. Find other things that compliment and improve on those as well.

Microsoft's main focus seems more to be to gimp the competition every step of the way. Integrate a free client into Windows that can't be removed if thats what it takes to kill off the competition. Microsoft seems more intent in stopping Google than advancing itself sometimes.

Microsoft has never really acted in a way to truly distance themselves from the "Dos ain't done til Lotus won't run" reputation they've had for most of their existence.

I'd rather have a product that competes with Google than Microsoft. If my product didn't last against Google it's probably because Googles was just better than mine, or just they have a better marketing budget. If I was up against Microsoft I'd expect my program to break and other weird incompatibilities with every 3rd patch Tuesday and eventually see Microsoft bundle their offering into the next Windows version effectively removing my market.

QuarterSwede said,
Exactly. Most of the time Microsoft doesn't innovate they imitate.

Sometimes they also just buy it. MS has bought up quite a lot of tech without giving credit to the creators. MS likes to make themselves look like they invent all this stuff themselves and make Bill Gates look like he's a brilliant pioneer. Gates is a good businessman, a good developer he is not.

toadeater said,

Sometimes they also just buy it. MS has bought up quite a lot of tech without giving credit to the creators. MS likes to make themselves look like they invent all this stuff themselves and make Bill Gates look like he's a brilliant pioneer. Gates is a good businessman, a good developer he is not.

Not a good developer? You clearly don't know what the hell you're talking about then. Apparently you forget the early days. Then again, you are probably only 14.

Primetime2006 said,

Not a good developer? You clearly don't know what the hell you're talking about then. Apparently you forget the early days. Then again, you are probably only 14.

Gates is a poor developer ??? LMAO, like to see you come up with some software that makes you the richest man in the world. and unless you are living like 20 years ago, what code do you think he wrote that was crap, i would bet my entire life savings he didn't write one single line of code for vista, XP, 200 or even NT.

and it is never the developer that desides how a progrma will be it is product management. learn about how the industry workks before you go bagging gates programming skills. i woudl love to see you write something in assembly language

"I could examine how Google essentially forced Microsoft to change the desktop search and indexing feature in Windows Vista SP1."

By whining and complaining that an integral feature to any modern OS made their garbage obsolete?

MioTheGreat said,
"I could examine how Google essentially forced Microsoft to change the desktop search and indexing feature in Windows Vista SP1."

By whining and complaining that an integral feature to any modern OS made their garbage obsolete?

They complained that Vista was sending searches directly to MS Live by default, not about Google desktop search. All they asked for was to give users a choice of search engine.

toadeater said,
They complained that Vista was sending searches directly to MS Live by default, not about Google desktop search. All they asked for was to give users a choice of search engine.

After they were done complaining about that, they were complaining about how Vista's built in search made their Google Desktop search useless. Microsoft is being forced to make a lot of changes to it for SP1.

(And even with the IE thing, i think they were complaining about how Microsoft listed the top search engines in alphabetical order, not making Google first.)

Look, I think Google's growth is all well and good, but if my Desktop Search in Vista gets messed up by SP1 changes, I'll be really put out with those fellows.

Heh, the interesting part is that MS is trying damn hard in delivering products lately. Windows Live, Vista, Server 2008, the .NET releases, Silverlight, ... They are anything but inactive, BUT...

Google is different. They roll out services too, but seemingly less and at a slower pace.

Yet Google succeed so well, and their stock has climbed +400% compared to Microsoft's since Google introduced it on the market. Why is that so, even when MS is trying so hard? I'd say it's a new, modern and working business model compared to an older one, and Google is actually a very different beast than MIcrosoft.

The idea with targeted ads was brilliant and Google got it to work well first, and they're reaping MASSIVE revenues from it. People come globally to pay Google for each CLICK in exchange for visibility on the by far top search engine, and sometimes each click is worth tens or even hundreds of dollars. Just imagine this on a global scale. The synergy that comes from this in terms of revenue has to be incredible, and even a bit scary.

You're not comparing Apples to Apples... Microsoft is orders of magnitudes larger than Google and more complex. Microsoft is also a far older company than Google so you can't look at Google's current high revenue stream (which isn't as high as MS overall by the way) and say Google is loads better than MS...

Products usually make a load of money when they are in the introductory stages, as Google's ad service is now, but that doesn't mean it will last them 30+ years as MS's line has...

Google, Yahoo and MSN seem to have around the same results I want in the first 3 pages when doing a regular search. They differ when using the other services like image search. Doing a image search, I will have to go with yahoo and Live over Google

So just web search and web ads, big ****ing deal. Only webmasters and advertising agencies care about all that jazz, the average user does not care much beyond using web search and being faced with annoying ads.

Google doesn't out-do anyone unless you're trying to out-do serving up spam search results for porn and piracy.

Not trolling, but Google sucks!
It's NOT everything that everybody makes it out to be. Sure, it's a killer business and they are about to try and rule the world, but, I said, that's business.

Google and Firefox go hand in hand with being so "fanboy" sickening popular, I purposely don't use them mainly for that reason!! Slight lie there. I don't use Firefox simply because it IS NOT good!! I'll use IE6 even, which I do, before Firefox anyday!

No you're definitely not trolling there. Biggest load of crap I've ever read.

Good, continue to use IE6, we're not forcing you to use Firefox.

You didn't even explain WHY google/firefox suck, you just said that you don't use them because their popular.
Do you know why things usually become popular? Because they don't suck.

Another thing I like Google for is its software: clean, simple, fast, and most of all, free. Take Windows Live Messenger and Google Talk, for example. Sure, WLM has many more features, but has advertising up the whazoo (sure, they can be removed), and GTalk is as simple as it is plain. That's why I like it: no bloatware.

Oh, and Google's software doesn't only work on Windows, they also support other OS's.

miguel_montes said,
Another thing I like Google for is its software: clean, simple, fast, and most of all, free. Take Windows Live Messenger and Google Talk, for example. Sure, WLM has many more features, but has advertising up the whazoo (sure, they can be removed), and GTalk is as simple as it is plain. That's why I like it: no bloatware.

Oh, and Google's software doesn't only work on Windows, they also support other OS's.

Exactly, and Google focuses a lot on other markets - for example, I can use almost everything in Croatia from Google (even in my native language) and SkyDrive IS NOT available in my region? That's pure speculation "is my country worth Microsoft software" - so everybody uses Google services :P

Microsoft's main business is in OS's, Office and other business/home sultions, while google is more of an internet solution. There is a difference. The reason why google overtook microsoft is because almost the whole world is online today, and google has become a synonymous for internet. first thing that comes to ones mind when we think about the internet is the solutions google provides. My dad doesn't know much about the internet, but being a town planner he does know that there are google maps. While microsoft continues to release its bloated solutions to everyday problems, google tackles the same with a simple and easy to use interface, which btw is preferred by most (take gmail example, google, etc).

Computer market is growing, and only due to the aid of internet. As long as google dominates the internet, it'll dominate the computer world. There were no such set standards, i remember opening multiple search engines to get my work done, yahoo, altavista, etc. Today, all I open is google. A standard has been set, and i don't see it going down or beaten for a long time to come.

Google has a pretty nice lock on the market, but I wouldn't call it a standard or even at a point where it can't be replaced easily...

I still have memories of Yahoo... Before Google Yahoo was regarded as the internet. I remember everyone having Yahoo as their homepage (like they do for Google now) and believing Yahoo was the internet. Then I remember in a short time Google usurping Yahoo and becoming the dominant search engine (Yahoo initially outsourced to Google).

The same thing could very well happen to Google. Though if it did at this stage Google would die a lot faster since it is far less diversified than Yahoo.

Rather simple really, Google = search.

Google has become synonymous with searching online; it's even become a verb. Like the iPod, when you become that mainstream, being the best technically is not that important anymore.

The article doesn't actually explain the title.... you've just told us how Google wants to buy doubleclick, standard business practices, etc. You haven't actually told us why Google continues to outdo Microsoft.

Evolution said,
The article doesn't actually explain the title.... you've just told us how Google wants to buy doubleclick, standard business practices, etc. You haven't actually told us why Google continues to outdo Microsoft.

Agreed

I also agree...

Google, so far, really operates in businesses that don't directly compete with Microsoft's main lines of business. So how is Google outdoing MS? It seems you spent the whole time talking about online advertising. That was never a market dominated by Microsoft and has, in the last few years, been dominated by Google. So the Doubleclick acquisition isn't anything but Google reaffirming their domination in the online advertising business.

Or am I missing something here?

People don't understand the market in which Google makes their money - It's called Search Engine Marketing

Google has AdSense; Microsoft has adCenter =P

The difference is comparable to Google Search vs Microsoft's MSN/Live Search.

Both companies are undeniably competing in the 'online advertising buisiness';
But I'll have to agree the author makes poor distinction between the article's title and content

zeromerk said,
People don't understand the market in which Google makes their money - It's called Search Engine Marketing

Google has AdSense; Microsoft has adCenter =P

The difference is comparable to Google Search vs Microsoft's MSN/Live Search.

Both companies are undeniably competing in the 'online advertising buisiness';
But I'll have to agree the author makes poor distinction between the article's title and content

Yea, for sure, Google and Microsoft are competitors on a small level. But the point I'm making is MS's AdCenter is not a core Microsoft business and it was never a market leader in online advertising. So Google, and every other major player before Google, has beaten MS in this industry.

For Google that is a good thing since their income stream is not diversified and online advertising is their main source of revenue that if MS was able to or interested in leading the market they might be pushed out of the computer industry as a whole.

While Google is certainly goood at search right now, the other day I checked out Yahoo! search and was totally impressed. It is also amazingly relevant, in fact, sometimes I felt (probably just me) that Yahoo! produced more accurate and relevant results.

xpclient said,
While Google is certainly goood at search right now, the other day I checked out Yahoo! search and was totally impressed. It is also amazingly relevant, in fact, sometimes I felt (probably just me) that Yahoo! produced more accurate and relevant results.

I use this:

http://www.customizegoogle.com/

It links to every other major search engine from inside Google's results and has a blacklist for spam sites like Expert's Exchange. This makes it faster than using the Firefox search dialog or retyping searches.

Yahoo's search results are almost as good as Google's. Lately I'm starting to like Google less because of all the spam/scam sites that Google promotes to the top of the results. I'd rather see forums and trustworthy sites listed first.