Ovum chimes in on Malik's 'GoogleNet'

Ovum chimes in on Malik's 'GoogleNet'

Summary: The offbeat idea (thanks Dan) Om Malik proposed in his Business 2.0 article last week about Google entering the Wi-Fi hotspot market would put a smile on consumers who are tired of paying for public wireless Internet access, and simultaneously bring an end to the revenues companies like T-Mobile, and Cingular get for selling it.

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TOPICS: Wi-Fi
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The offbeat idea (thanks Dan) Om Malik proposed in his Business 2.0 article last week about Google entering the Wi-Fi hotspot market would put a smile on consumers who are tired of paying for public wireless Internet access, and simultaneously bring an end to the revenues companies like T-Mobile, and Cingular get for selling it. But as Ovum’s Roger Entner points out, it would take a lot of effort to make it work: "The challenges would be daunting, ranging from running a wireless network, managing a handset portfolio, to distribution and customer service. None of these are areas where Google has a deep understanding yet."  Valid concerns, but with the search giant planning to add $4 billion to its coffers in its second stock offering, Google would be in a good position to pull it off.

Topic: Wi-Fi

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  • Irrational ExGooberance (Why Would Google WiFi)

    As I wrote in a vastly overlong post I can't see why Google, a company that has historically avoided the cost and risk associated with becoming a major infrastructure entity, would suddenly do an about face of "Epic" proportion and begin to WiFi the world with GoogleNet?

    It's not like they need to create some artificial increase in inventory upon which to display their ads, and in fact, in some respects by creating their own dedicated infrastructure they've created a channel conflict with the portals that currently have their advertising running. Would the improved margins offset the cost build something like GoogleNet? I'd find that surprising. Beyond this, Google has done awfully well by the public. Their search engine is arguable the best. Gmail has certainly won over the hearts of many, the personalized home page is where more than a few start each session, and with the exception of the past few days when most people took a beating, even Google's stock, can do no wrong.

    In fact, Google has nowhere to go but down in an infrastructure play. You've heard the saying "no good deed goes unpunished" and I can tell you that those same people that love Google today and evangelize the mutli-colored logo like a deity, would turn on the company like a pack of rabid dogs after struggling to connect to Googlenet and getting booted while in the middle of an intense chat with there latest internet fling.

    In addition, Google has other challenges right now and it seems to me it would be ill advised to take on a task as massive and far from their core competencies as GoogleNet while they're facing the deal with Geico. If that decision is upheld on appeal (and mind you I do not theink Google will settle), there are going to be companies coming out of the woodwork to suck Google like fleas on a dog right when one of Google's primary sources of generating of revenue has been snatched away from them. No...I can think of a lot of other reasons why Google might buy some fiber but to give the world free WiFI? I am not convinced that this is one of them.

    Moreover, I'm beginning to think that we are in the "GoogleGrip" or what I've referred to as Irrational ExGooberance above. That is, any time there's any announcement coming from or related to Google, it is taken to the nth degree. In the last year alone I've heard that Google was going to take out eBay, PayPal, Microsoft and now the entire 3/4 of a billion telecommunications industry. I don't know...maybe I am mistaken but that seems like an awful lot of weight to put on one companies shoulders. Even one as successful and as packed with smart people as Google happens to be.

    Oliver Starr "stitch"
    http://www.mobile-weblog.com

    PS: for those that are curious, here's my original analysis based upon Om's first GoogleNet Post
    Oliver Starr "stitch"
  • The Link...

    http://www.mobile-weblog.com/50226711/caught_in_the_google_grip_i_dream_of_free_wifieverywhere.php
    Oliver Starr "stitch"