Google is by far one of the most powerful companies in the world. It dominates multiple fields like no other company in history, and it has the ability to control digital advertising rates and the information most of us see.
It is scary b/c its dominance seems literally unstoppable. (At the bottom of this blog, you can see some fascinating “Google Factoids” I borrowed from Leonard Steinberg’s excellent Compass blog.)
But is Google really unstoppable? Author George Gilder says Google is not only stoppable, but its dominance will end sooner than we think.
In his somewhat boring book 😊, Life After Google, Gilder says Google depends on sharing peoples’ data and on ad revenues to survive. BUT, people are tired of having their data shared and they want to avoid ads.
The other issue is that Google does not offer secure, hacker-proof channels for info and emails. For these reasons, Gilder says everyone will eventually migrate to other (non-Google) platforms that are free of ads and data sharing, and are 100% secure with the use of blockchain technology.
Is Gilder right? In the early 1990s, Gilder wrote Life After Television and predicted the entire internet and online streaming entertainment complex that we all enjoy today. In other words, he has been amazingly accurate with his predictions.
OTHER COMPANIES THAT DOMINATED AND FELL
Google’s dominance reminds me of many other dominant companies that seemed equally unstoppable, like General Motors in the 1960s, IBM and Kodak in the 1980s, and Microsoft and Blockbuster Video in the 1990s. All were rendered impotent by competition and/or technology shifts.
Even Kellogg’s Cereal was deemed too powerful by antitrust authorities in the 1970s, but shifting consumer tastes quickly made that concern seem comical. Frosted Flakes anyone?
The point of this blog is that no matter how powerful or dominant any single player is in any industry, they can fall much faster than any of us can possibly imagine.
This is a reminder to not rely too much on any single company or technology or paradigm overall, and to also be ready for possible new opportunities when the mighty do fall, and some most definitely will.
Everything will change, and probably a lot faster and a lot more than we think.
PROOF OF GOOGLE’S DOMINANCE
- Google has 8 products with a billion users: search, Gmail, Chrome, YouTube, Maps, Android, the Play Store, and Drive.
- Its search engine has 90.9% market share worldwide, according to StatCounter.
- Its Android operating system has 76.8% mobile market share worldwide.
- Its Chrome browser has 59.7% market share worldwide.
- Its YouTube video service reaches 90% of digital video viewers worldwide, excluding Chinese citizens, and 1.58 billion people watch videos on it at least once a month, according to eMarketer.
- Overall, Google will account for 37.1% of all U.S. digital advertising revenue this year, according to eMarketer.
- Google serves ads on over 2 million third-party websites, reaching over 90% of the people on the internet.
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