Google focuses on users, not Microsoft

Google Inc. co-founder and president of products Larry Page starts counting after he runs a query on the company's search engine to see how quickly the results come back.

He also evaluates how relevant the results are to his query -- and he's never satisfied.

"He doesn't think our search engine is a good search engine today," said Omid Kordestani, Google's senior vice president of global sales and business development, during an appearance at the Web 2.0 Conference in San Francisco on Wednesday.

Page's disappointment with Google's core service has existed at least since Kordestani joined Google in 1999, he said. Page's passion about driving improvements and innovation across all Google services has been key to making the company successful, Kordestani said during a session in which he answered questions from conference chair John Battelle and from audience members.

One thing that Google executives don't obsess about is Microsoft Corp., according to Kordestani. Although Microsoft has identified Google as one of its biggest competitors, Google keeps its focus on serving its users, not on one-upping Microsoft, he said.

Asked about Google's famous decision not to provide financial guidance to outsiders such as financial analysts ahead of its quarterly results, Kordestani said that the policy doesn't mean the company feels no internal pressure to meet its sales goals.

Another thing Google feels a bit of pressure about is to not be perceived as a Goliath whose entry into more new markets may harm the ability of smaller technology companies from innovating, he said.

"We feel that sense of responsibility. We're sensitive to that," he said. "We don't want to be seen as a gorilla in the [Silicon] Valley."

Copyright © 2005 IDG Communications, Inc.

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