With Chromecast, Google reveals Chrome as its strategic big gun
The browser is behind Google's play for user data from as many screens as possible
Computerworld - Chrome is Google and Google is Chrome.
The Chrome browser is Google's most potent strategic weapon, a former Microsoft program manager said last week.
"Chrome is the focus at Google; Android is an afterthought," asserted Ben Thompson, who writes on his Stratechery blog. Thompson, who left Microsoft earlier this month, has quickly made a name for himself with insights into the technology market, in particular Microsoft, Apple and Google, ranging from Microsoft's massive reorganization to the possible role for a larger, 13-in. iPad.
"Chrome shouldn't be thought of as a Web browser," Thompson wrote. "Rather, it's an optimized bi-directional delivery vehicle: the best experience with Google services for users, and maximum user data for Google. And it runs everywhere. This is why Google has been investing millions of dollars in building the Chrome brand."
Thompson's latest post was reacting to the debut of Chromecast, the $35 stream-to-TV device Google introduced last week. Chromecast, said Google, is powered by a simplified version of Chrome OS. (Although GTVHacker.com claimed Chromecast is "more Android than ChromeOS.")
"As a horizontal company, Google wants to be on every screen, and their vehicle to accomplish that across verticals, both from a technical and brand perspective, is Chrome," Thompson added. By "verticals," Thompson meant "devices."
It's hard to argue with Thompson.
Google has been expending significant resources to push Chrome into as many corners as possible.
Not only is Chrome (the browser) available for all major desktop and mobile platforms -- from Windows and OS X to Android and iOS -- the major features of Chrome OS are being added to the browser, including packaged, nee "native," Web apps and the ability to view and edit Microsoft Office documents.
The goal? From Thompson's viewpoint, control of a "multi-screen world."
Others have had similar thoughts.
"It looks like Google is defining the Chrome platform as what I'd call 'Web Platform Plus,' and intends for Chrome OS and the Chrome browser to be a 'platform on a platform' on any device it is permitted to run on," said IDC analyst Al Hilwa in a May interview, months before Chromecast.
By defining that "platform on a platform" -- Chrome on Windows, on Android, on iOS, on OS X, on the television -- Google is trying to turn as many devices and screens as possible into ones locked into the company's ecosystem, keep users loyal to that same ecosystem of sites, service and apps, and entice others to join them.
The ultimate prize is more revenue, which Google generates almost exclusively from online advertising. All Google does, argued Charles Golvin, an analyst with Forrester, is driven by its search for more, and more expensive, advertising.
- Google's next frontier: What it means to be healthy
- Google updates the Maps Explore Nearby feature -- for some users
- Chrome gets sharp after dumping 30-year-old Windows technology
- Google moves closer to selling smart contacts
- Google goes mum on Glass release plans
- Samsung Gear Live vs. LG G Watch: A real-world evaluation
- Android Wear deep-dive review: A smart start to smartwatch software
- Google's Larry Page talks of killing the 40-hour work week
- Google terminates Quickoffice apps on Android, iOS
- Google I/O looks to be about more than Android
- Social Media Education: The New Edge for Success Failure to train for social media will cost your business money. A recent report showed how digitally prepared companies can unlock up to...
- Social Media in Technology: A Unified Strategy for Success Find out how social media is sparking a new era of customer and industry-understanding in technology enterprises and how industry leaders are overcoming...
- How Network Connections Drive Web Application Performance Users around the globe, on all sorts of devices, expect Web applications to function as seamlessly as desktop applications. This paper discusses the...
- Mission Critical: Managing Mobile Applications & Content Smartphones, tablets and other mobile devices have become embedded in enterprise processes, thanks to the consumerization of IT and a new generation of...
- Keep Servers Up and Running and Attackers in the Dark An SSL/TLS handshake requires at least 10 times more processing power on a server than on the client. SSL renegotiation attacks can readily...
- On Demand: Mastering the Art of Mobile Content Management Mobile device usage in the enterprise has skyrocketed, and it continues to escalate. IT must answer to users who demand access to their... All Internet White Papers | Webcasts
Our new bimonthly Internet of Things newsletter helps you keep pace with the rapidly evolving technologies, trends and developments related to the IoT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!