5 Microsoft and Google battlegrounds in 2009

5 Microsoft and Google battlegrounds in 2009

Summary: The tension between these two software giants got a bit thicker this year, and it's certain that it will again in 2010. Here's a look at who is winning on each front in 2009.


The tension between these two software giants got a bit thicker this year, and it's certain that it will again in 2010. Here's a look at who is winning on each front in 2009.

1) IE8 vs. Google Chrome Each version of Internet Explorer released is an opportunity for companies like Google to steal market share. This year was a very big year -- and has given us an early glimpse into browser wars 2.0 that will surely play out over a few years.

Google Chrome had a great year -- development versions are already on version 4.0. The browser is *actually* fast, unlike claims being made by Microsoft about IE8. In fact, most of the facts being given out by Microsoft about their new browser are completely false -- an attempt to retain as much market share as possible.

Even though the number of users using IE8 are greater than those using Google Chrome, I'm giving this one to Google.

Winner: Google

2) Operating System: Google Chrome OS vs. Windows

Not much of a fight here this year. Even though Google showed us their plans for Google Chrome OS, there is not much of a threat here for Microsoft Windows.

Winner: Microsoft

3) Operating System: Android vs. Windows Mobile 6.5

Microsoft has really been falling behind on the mobile front. Instead of releasing Windows Mobile 7, all they could do was give us 6.5 -- a relatively small improvement over 6. In the same breath, Google's Android operating system has found its way onto a handful of devices, and has had 2 major versions released in just one year.

2010 should hopefully be a more competitive year on this front, but this year has to go to Google.

Winner: Google

4) Search Engine: Google Search vs. Bing

I have been surprised so far with Bing actually -- it's been doing better than I had originally thought it would -- though I still don't believe Google has anything to worry about.

Both search engines gained market share this year: Google (+2.3%) and Bing (+0.1%) according to Net Applications as of Novermber.

Both search engines struck deals with Twitter to gain access to their firehose. Real-time search has been added to Google in their main index, and Bing has added a separate tool that you can use to search through tweets.

Due to Google's increased dominant position, and their superior feature created as part of their foray into real-time search has earned Google the gold star for this one.

Winner: Google

5) The Enterprise Microsoft is fighting to keep their enterprise clients from Google Apps, while Google is looking to steal any type of market share by offering cheaper licensing fees and lower overall costs.

About the same time Google announced their (impressive) numbers around Google Apps, Microsoft decided to drop their licensing fees. There's no word on whether the price cut has anything to do with any pressure that may be coming from Google, but there's no question -- it's game on.

Even though Google reported impressive numbers (2 million businesses and 20 million users), there's no word on how many of those are using Google Apps exclusively, and how many of those are paid. The Google Apps standard edition is free -- but lets companies only create a limited number of accounts, and doesn't include some of the features of "premium".

There is no way Google won the enterprise battle this year -- though it's unlikely they will give up for 2010.

Winner: Microsoft

What do you think about what's happening between the two companies? Let's hear it in the TalkBack!

Topics: Operating Systems, Cloud, Google, Microsoft, Software

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  • RE: 5 Microsoft and Google battlegrounds in 2009

    don't buy from your privacy fraudster!

    sell out Chinese democracy
  • Not quite true

    1) More people are using FF, Chrome and Safari, something
    which promotes web standards. Even Microsoft has seen it
    necessary to follow standards in a better way than before!

    Winner: Everybody!

    2) Even though Windows still enjoys its monopoly on the PC
    is it becoming increasingly irrelevant because of the WWW.
    The cloud is taking over more and more together with
    handheld devices like those with Android in them, or the

    Winner: Google and Apple, the PC is just one device to

    3) I agree, not much to get excited of from Redmond, while
    both Google and Apple are producing great operating
    systems for smartphones.

    Winner: Apple above all, but Google too.

    4) It'll be extremely difficult to top Google's achievement in
    the search arena, so I predict many years of Google
    dominance, unfortunately because the market desperately
    needs GOOD competition.

    Winner: Google.

    5) Who cares about the enterprises really? They are
    notoriously conservative and are never using the latest and
    greatest hi tech, while the private users do. If you win in the
    home market, you'll eventually win elsewhere too.

    Winner: Microsoft for now.
    • Still not quite true

      I need to nitpick a little bit (with Garett as well as you):

      I disagree that ChromeOS is "not much of a threat" to Windows. So far, the OS has done nothing, but I believe it represents a very significant threat. Windows is vulnerable at the low end and in mobile, low cost devices (netbooks/smartbooks). If ChromeOS can do major damage here, then the desktop/notebook market for casual users may be next.

      Search competition: While I agree with you in principle, I like Google to be powerful, for now. The IBM PC and MS imposed order and standards on the early PC market, which benefited the consumers for many years.

      At this juncture, the Wintel "hegemony" needs to be broken to allow more innovation and competition in the PC market. I believe Google is the only player who may actually be able to do that, via Android, ChromeOS and ARM based HW. That is the main reason I am rooting for Google. If they can accomplish that, they will have made a contribution similar to what Intel/MS did a couple of decades ago.

      If Google starts acting too arrogantly or too much like a monopoly, we can deal with that in due course.
      • You forget

        the smartphones and the fact that the iPhone share is growing with an unbelievable rate. The real winner here is Apple and the success spills over to Apple's other gadgets, Macs included.

        I don't think we'll [b]primarily[/b] use stationary computers and laptops forever. The japanese people seem to prefer smartphones instead of PCs, and I already see a lot of youngsters here in Sweden browsing their
        Facebook messages in their cellphones which work more and more like real computers for their needs.
        • agreed cellphones are great

          I disagree that you need a smartphone. For what?
          Most phones run Java apps. Some applications are very portable between phones. Ironically it seems to be the unbranded cheap chinese phones that have the best Java implementations.
          Personally I often use the phone instead of a laptop.
          The laptop is better for organisational tasks, where you need a big screen. eg: watching movies, video editing, arranging photos. But video editing is possible with many basic phones.
          I browse websites on my chinese phone as well (3g -> wifi sucks as it uses too much battery power). It's very functional to browse on a phone, very convenient time wise (check the news & your email while you're standing in a queue at the airport).
          Most smartphones are far too massive for convenience, and I can't see what they do better than a regular 3g phone. (they all do music, games, video taking/editing, web browsing and so on).
        • Cells are great, but not that great

          Smartphones are not for me. I own a phone I can browse Facebook with, however, for other things, I still prefer a laptop or desktop PC.
          The one and only, Cylon Centurion
  • RE: 5 Microsoft and Google battlegrounds in 2009

    Google vs Microsoft
    to be continued in 2010...
  • RE: 5 Microsoft and Google battlegrounds in 2009

    Google will have to a awful lot of work if it hopes to compete with Office live applications. In terms of feature richness Google cannot com compare. Feature richness has never Google's strong point, but they have needed to.
    • Feature richness is not everything

      For the power user the features in MS Office are
      great. For the vast majority of ordinary users
      they are an unmitigated nuisance. Office only
      works if you use it exactly the way MS considers
      correct. If you want something just a bit
      different it is a fight as Office tries to stop
      you making what it thinks are mistakes. I still
      use Lotus Smartsuite Millennium edition as it
      simply does what you want it to.
  • The big thing to notice is that Microsoft is becoming weaker on all fronts.

    Even on the monopolies of Windows and Office, they were
    forced into doing very uncomfortable things. On netbooks
    MS was forced to serve a market that they did not want to
    service, and give huge discounts. On Office, they were
    forced to create an online version to fight off Google
    and others.

    Microsoft will only get more uncomfortable next year -
    VERY uncomfortable.
    • With what?

      Cloud computing? That thing that is going to be the downfall of all humanity?
      The one and only, Cylon Centurion
      • It's coming

        Like it or not, it's here to stay...
        Wintel BSOD
        • Sorry

          I and many others will not be using it.

          And I don't wanna hear we didn't tell you so.
          The one and only, Cylon Centurion
          • Sorry

            [i]I and many others will not be using it.[/i]

            But you and many others aren't everybody. Many others out there will...

            [i]And I don't wanna hear we didn't tell you so.[/i]

            We will. ;)
            Wintel BSOD
          • Linux.

            It's been here to stay for 20 years, and it's at 1% globally?

            Yeah, the Google netbook will be a real winner.

            And I am telling you so. :)
            John Zern
          • Change.

            [i]It's been here to stay for 20 years, and it's at 1% globally?[/i]

            It's the biggest 1% in the whole wide world, now isn't it. And it seems to occupy a lot of space in your mind.

            Maybe it's really not so small after all. :)

            [i]Yeah, the Google netbook will be a real winner.[/i]

            Well we really don't know, now do we?

            But I do know this. The present, traditional way of computing will change over a period of time as mobile devices get even more sophisticated and cloud computing takes it's place. I predict the PC as we know it today will not be around in 10 or 20 years.

            [i]And I am telling you so.[/i]

            Change is a b!tch, now isn't it... lol... :D
            Wintel BSOD
        • For as long as...

          ... you can stand the downtime. I have client in the clouds and it has been a constant disaster. The net is down, the host, the line was cut north of here... it goes on and on. Not to mention the speed which varies from slow to slower.

          We're moving them to a in house SQL based server that, in case of a big disaster, can be installed on an another system... in a matter of hours!

    • Actually, it sounds like you're the uncomfortable one

      Your posts spek volumes... :)
      John Zern
  • Chrome will never beat Windows

    Not with what Google demonstrated a few months back.

    There is just no frakkin way such a crippled "Cloud OS" can beat a full featured Windows PC/Mac. Hell even a standard desktop Linux distro will be hard to beat.
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • On a netbook or mobile device

      That's not going to matter that much. Unless you're one of those people who have unrealistic expectations and expect a phone or netbook to behave like a like a full featured PC.
      Wintel BSOD