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Google's Set to Launch Google Me: Should Facebook Be Worried?
[August 09, 2010]

Google's Set to Launch Google Me: Should Facebook Be Worried?


TMCnet Contributing Editor
 
There has long been talk that Google is ready to give Facebook a run for its money in terms of the social network space. Now, ZDnet reports that Google is just about ready to launch its "Google Me" social network - should Facebook (News - Alert) be worried?



It may be important to note here that this isn't Google's first attempt at making a social networking dent. Orkut - Google's (News - Alert) Facebook - has proven to be a successful website, but only in a few countries.

Rumors emerging from industry sources such as Venture Beat have all Facebook execs, engineers and other key players are under intense pressure over the next 60 days to ensure Facebook doesn't lose market share.


Such rumors have not been confirmed, but if they do hold some truth, it would mean that Facebook believes Google presents a certain level of threat to their dominant position in the industry.

If history is any type of teacher, however, Google hasn't really produced a solid product in the social networking market as of yet. Orkut is still only a small success in key areas and Google has already purchased and thrown away two different market offerings, including Dodgeball and Jaiku. Even Google Buzz - which the company hoped to use to make a dent - has had serious privacy problems.

Of course, Facebook has not been without its own share of privacy issues, yet they seem more forgivable when so many users are already addicted to their use of the site. So the question that remains is whether or not Google can introduce a platform that will have the same draw as Facebook, without the privacy or security issues?

The interesting thing is that consumers today are finicky enough to try a new platform if it presents something new and exciting and what they perceive to be "better" than what they already have. It is important to remember that in this world of fast moving technology, nothing is static and constant improvements are demanded to remain alive. Can Facebook keep the pace?

In other Facebook news, the company received a boost this summer when Vonage (News - Alert) rolled out the Vonage Mobile application for Facebook. Company officials said the new service allows users to make free mobile calls to all of their Facebook friends who have the have the app, anywhere in the world, directly from their friends list, with a single touch.

Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TMCnet and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Erin Harrison

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