Saturday, 17 October 2009

Google Editions and Apple

(By Richard Holway Saturday 17th Oct 09) One of the announcements made last week by Google perhaps didn’t get the prominence it deserved. The launch of Google Editions will make ebooks available on any browser-based device – netbooks, PCs, smartphones. You can either read a Google book for free, if out of copyright, or buy it from Google if not. So, it is not surprising that both Amazon (Kindle) and Sony (ebook) are the worried ones.

Google Editions is all setup rather nicely for the upcoming Apple Tablet launch – a device which I expect to be tailor-made for both book and newspaper reading.

Last week Google also announced that it was back on the acquisition trail. Although I suspect this will mainly be niche strategic add-ons, a big deal has not been ruled out. Also last week, Arthur Levenson from Genentech, who served on both the Google and Apple boards, stepped down from Google citing conflict of interest. Eric Schmidt resigned from Apple’s board in Aug for the same reason.

Apple and Google compete in relatively few areas at present but have ambitions which put them on a collision course. But currently, I think they are quite complementary and share similar ideals. Now some might question my sanity for suggesting an Apple/Google coupling but, if you think about it, the logic is strong. Mind you, on a personal level, I’d hate it. But I guess there will come a time when we will have to live with an Apple without Steve Jobs – so maybe it’s not really so crazy after all.

No comments:

Post a Comment