March 19 2012
Clues, smoke, not necessarily fire, but interesting to see what's apparently happening at Google.
First, an ex-Googler (who apparently has rejoined Microsoft), James Whittaker, wrote a lengthy note on why he decided to leave Google. Very blunt:
The Google I was passionate about was a technology company that empowered its employees to innovate. The Google I left was an advertising company with a single corporate-mandated focus. ...Which then raises the question of whether Google Enterprise is still one of those key arrows. On Friday, Google's Vice President of Google Apps, Dave Girouard, announced that he is leaving to start his own firm. Which, every individual has their motivations, but at a time when the market for cloud-based email and collaboration is growing, I would think it would be a great time to be captain of the ship.
As the trappings of entrepreneurship were dismantled, derisive talk of the “old Google” and its feeble attempts at competing with Facebook surfaced to justify a “new Google” that promised “more wood behind fewer arrows.”
I don't know Girouard. I tried, several years ago, to network with him, but never heard back from him. Maybe that whole priority inbox doesn't quite work as advertised. Or maybe the broader issue, as the GigaOM story I linked above cites:
Last fall, market researcher Gartner estimated that Google Apps for Business represented less than 1 percent of Google’s overall revenue and there is some doubt as to whether the enterprise apps business remains a priority for the company.
Yes, this post is pure conjecture. But we have all been at this long enough to know how to read certain tea leaves. It will be interesting to watch where Google goes from here.
Meanwhile, Seeking Alpha says IBM is poised to become the biggest cloud player in the market. Nice plug for IBM Docs in there as well.