In nine days' time, Google will report its second quarter financial results, and no matter how well the search giant's done, at least a few critics are sure to argue that it needs to succeed in new fields. Matt Brittin, Managing Director of Google UK, seems to feel mobile and social are the two main candidates.
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Google isn't exactly trailing its competitors in terms of offering mobile products and services, of course. Android has become a fairly mainstream mobile operating system, and more and more info is starting to circulate about Chrome OS, which might function in a similar space. Plus, it's already possible to access just about all of Google's existing products using any sort of smartphone.
Brittin hinted that Google's mobile efforts may soon overshadow its more traditional endeavors, however.
Brittin told Jonathan Sibun this weekend, "As growth in broadband starts to flatten off, we're seeing the next wave. The big shift is to mobile internet. Between 25pc and 30pc of consumers use their mobiles to access the internet. But in three years' time analysts believe more people will be accessing it from their mobiles than from a desktop. That's a massive change."
As for what he said with regards to social networking, Brittin wouldn't go so far as to confirm the existence of Google Me. Still, he didn't deny that a new product's in the works.
Furthermore, Brittin implied that Facebook can be beat, and the UK exec even issued a reminder that one of Google's properties has already achieved some success in the field.
"Facebook is an absolute phenomenon but there are other social networks which are successful too," Brittin said. "We've got Orkut, which is fantastically successful in India and Brazil. And Bebo is successful in other countries. It's a phenomenon that is with us to stay. I think what we'll see is the internet becoming more of a social place, as well as people being social within the context of social networks."
It's hard to imagine Brittin would make these points if Google didn't intend to participate in the trends.
Do you think Google can be successful on the mobile and social fronts? Let us know by commenting below.