Page Bringing Google Pack, Videos To CES

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The keynote by Google co-founder Larry Page at CES 2006 will unveil video purchase options and a new downloadable software pack from the company.

Partnerships with the NBA and CBS form the center of the pending keynote address by Page in Las Vegas. On Friday, video download purchasing and a bundle of software from Google should be the major points in Page’s talk, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Sources familiar with the upcoming keynote disclosed the topics to the Journal. Google’s formal take on the keynote said, “We have a number of exciting announcements that we look forward to sharing in detail on Friday afternoon, during Larry’s keynote address at CES.”

That excitement should include the NBA and CBS among other video partners. Recent changes to the Google Video terms of service in December revealed language that focused on payment for video downloads. The Journal opined that a broad enough video initiative could put Google in competition with Apple.

The report listed the Google Pack’s software contents:

That software will include the open-source Firefox Web browser, a version of Norton AntiVirus software from Symantec Corp., Adobe Systems Inc.’s Reader software, RealNetworks Inc.’s RealPlayer multimedia software, Trillian instant-messaging software from Cerulean Studios and Lavasoft AB’s Ad-Aware antispyware software. Google Pack will also include Google’s own desktop search software, Google Earth satellite imaging and maps software, Picasa photo-management software, Google Talk instant-messaging program, its Toolbar add-on for Web browsers and screen saver software.

Conspicuously absent from the preliminary list is productivity software. Given Google’s collaboration agreement with Sun Microsystems, it wouldn’t have been unusual to see OpenOffice or StarOffice as part of the package.

It is surprising to see Symantec as part of that list. Symantec complained to the European Union in October 2005 when details about Microsoft’s Client Protection package emerged. Microsoft plans to make Client Protection, including antivirus and antispyware technology, part of the Windows Vista operating system.

A Symantec spokesperson expressed concerns about a “level playing field” as part of the company’s statement regarding the complaint. Being part of a freely available Google Pack via download or as a preinstalled option on new PCs would appear to negate Symantec’s argument.

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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

Page Bringing Google Pack, Videos To CES
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