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Schmidt: Google’s Beyond Search Now

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Just about everyone has an opinion on what Google is and where they are going. A recent interview with Google CEO Eric Schmidt with Wired reveals what he thinks Google is and what the future holds for the company.

When asked how we should think about Google, Schmidt said,” Think of it first as an advertising system. Then as an end-user system — Google Apps. A third way to think of Google is as a giant supercomputer.”

 “And a fourth way is to think of it as a social phenomenon involving the company, the people, the brand, the mission, the values — all that kind of stuff.”

 Google is all those things but most people would think of it as a giant search engine as well. Maybe the reason Schmidt did not mention Google as being a search engine is that it is the most obvious response he could have given or maybe “giant supercomputer” covers his idea of what Google is today.

On the subject of Viacom suing Google, Schmidt downplayed the seriousness of the suit calling it “a business negotiation”. He added that the infringement issue in his view was a shared responsibility saying,” Well, if they would look at the law, they’d understand that under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, there’s a shared responsibility.”

When asked why Google purchased YouTube even though they knew they would face legal battles, Schmidt believes the deal was too good to pass on.” Because we think it’s fantastic. I mean, we really do think that the YouTube phenomenon is sustainable for many, many years.”

“And the argument is simple: People are using videoclips everywhere. They’re sharing them. They’re building communities around them. YouTube’s traffic continues to grow rapidly.”

Schmidt added that YouTube would pay for itself in simple searches and as they integrate the searches for both Google and YouTube they would drive more traffic to both places. They also have plans to run video ads on YouTube in the future which Schmidt believes will bring more traffic to offline ads such as TV.

On joining the board of Apple and possible future partnerships, Schmidt cited the release of the iPhone, which comes with Google Maps installed. He did not reveal any other future plans between the two companies, but did note that Google’s services are a good match for Apple’s technology.

While Google continues to be innovative they are moving away from being just a search engine and have for sometime. Right now they are more focused on advertising then search or so it would seem from Schmidt’s response as what Google is today.

Schmidt: Google’s Beyond Search Now
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