Wednesday, May 19, 2004

Google plans Desktop Search

Rajesh points to a NYtimes article on how Google is entering the desktop space. This is making the whole search business interesting.



The Google software project, which is code-named Puffin and which will be available as a free download from Google's Web site, has been running internally at the company for about a year.

The project was started, in part, to prepare Google for competing with Windows Longhorn, which according to industry analysts will dispense with the need for a stand-alone browser.

The disappearance of the Web browser and the integration of both Web search and PC search into the Windows operating system could potentially marginalize Google's search engine. Google, well aware of this threat, hired a Microsoft product manager last year to oversee the Puffin project as part of its strategy to compete with Microsoft's incursion into its territory.

Google's strategy is to move quickly while Microsoft is still developing its Longhorn version of Windows, adding programs and services like its recently announced Gmail electronic mail program. The intent, say people who are aware of the company's strategy, is to lower its vulnerability to Microsoft by adding businesses that are "sticky" - in other words, businesses that create strong customer loyalty or are hard to switch away from.


Interestingly Rafat Ali thinks that this is all pre-IPO hype and nothing else.

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