Google has lost its focus

Google is spending so much time and money on saving the environment and funding development of renewable energy and fuel efficient green car, but it has no time for its core business. Look at so many Google products like Google Finance, Google Doc and Spreadsheet or Gmail, or Blogger, some of these need serious revamp. But Google continues to fiddle with non core PR kind of activities.

See this latest PR gimmick on Google blog.

Carbon Neutrality by end of 2007
Climate change continues to be one of the biggest, most challenging problems our planet faces, and we know that a sustained global effort is needed if we're going to have any hope of reversing its effects. In that spirit, today we're announcing that Google will become carbon neutral by the end of 2007. This is an important step in our long-term pursuit of holistic environmental solutions.

Our plan to neutralize Google's carbon footprint includes three basic strategies:
- reduce energy consumption by maximizing efficiency;
- invest in and use renewable energy sources; and
- purchase carbon offsets for the emissions that we can't reduce directly.

Google Spreadsheet and Doc have basic functions. Beyond that there has been no improvements in them since launch. The charting capabilities in Spreadsheet are so basic that you can't use them for any major work. Blogger is a product, which is many generations behind most other blogging platform. By neglecting it Google has allowed others to take on leadership.

Google Finance is another of Google offering, which needs serious revamp and rethink. Since its launch there has been no serious rethink on it. Considering the fact that Yahoo Finance and Moneycentral have also not been doing any innovation in their offerings for years, this space is ready for some serious innovation. But Google is happy with its half baked approach.

Google looks like a dysfunctional company lacking in serious product focus. The earning growth in core business seems to be making them complacent. Also lacking in Google is marketing culture . Looks like techies are calling all the shots. Soon Google might find itself in same boat as Yahoo.


Vincenze said...

PR gimmick? Have you read up on Google.org?

I'd hardly call their plans a gimmick.

Pradeep Bonde said...

All big companies currently are fearful of environmental terrorists. So as a prudent insurance they do all these kind of activities and beat their drum on such activities. The right word for it is PR.

All organizations have lofty goals and high sounding plans, especially if they are non profit ones. Google.org is no exception.

If Google's core business takes a hit, all these activities will be quickly folded and forgotten.

walter said...

pradeep, you hit on the key: "If Google's core business takes a hit, all these activities will be quickly folded and forgotten"

core business is good - so they can do this "other" stuff. this other stuff, at least for me, increases my brand loyalty. i cant speak for others. obviously they shouldn't lose there focus, and these things are not mutually exclusive.

"environmental terrorists"? - sensational language?

internet said...

GOOG has succumbed to the MSFT-effect.....lots of original, vested employees with in-the-money options.

It's human nature....working 80+ hour days isn't so appealing when you have $500k banked.

Pradeep Bonde said...

Technology is Google's business and they can not solve mundane bugs and problems in Blogger or many of their other products and services after being aware of it for years, and they want to solve worlds energy problem and environmental problem. What expertise do they have in it.

Many Environmental Organizations have extreme ideology and they use extreme means to achieve them. Look at Europe and the kind of things Environmental organizations based their do. Some of them are terrorists. Big companies are scared of their terror tactics, so they do politically correct thing to build public relations.

The animal rights moment in UK has fire bombed scientist, stolen human remains of some of the animal farm owners from graves. It is now impossible to do some animal research in UK.

Andrew said...

I'd hardly call increased energy conservation a PR gimmick. I'm sure the payback of many of Google's efforts will be very short indeed, and after this short time, will begin to save major infrastructure expenses. Do you then suspect all energy conservation measures to be gimmicks like energy star certification or compact fluorescent bulbs? I can assure you these things do save money AND the environment, something everyone should be interested in. Furthermore, as Walter said, these initiatives certainly increase my loyalty to the brand.

Pradeep Bonde said...

Energy conservation done for energy conservation sake or cost reason is done without beating your own drum and silently.
This is being done publicly to score brownie points with environmentally inclined consumers who can be easily manipulated with PR.
Activities designed to increase brand loyalty are called PR.Those who are easily influenced by PR do not understand how PR works.

If Google wants to increase brand loyalty, why not improve existing products and solve known consumer dissatisfaction with their products.

walter said...

improving current services/products, inventing new ones, and implementing environmentally friendly policies/initiatives, PR stunts or not, are not mutually exclusive things. maybe GOOGLE will be able to pull them all off. it wouldn't a bad thing. other companies have done worse things.

internet said...

one thing GOOG can add to blogspot....a "book format" button that collates all your entries into one MS Word document/pdf/etc.

Unless anyone already knows of an app that can do that.

Unknown said...

Saying Google has lost its focus is a little dramatic don't you think? Especially after the Double Click aquisition just a few months ago. They've got MSFT and Yahoo scared shitless. You may have read the headline of the recent Yahoo bigwig that call it quits.

I'm not so sure right now is the best time to fade them.

The Market Speculator said...

Google is the model of a successful *and* ethical corporation. PR gimmick? This is a company that lives by the motto "Don't be evil", and they are backing it up.

Considering google docs and mail are free, I think they are good products. I use them and don't have many complaints. In fact, you use them to, and your very own blog is via google. Why is that?

I'm not surprised you are anti- environment, animal rights and energy conservation. Afterall, it doesn't seem that you had any ethical issues attempting to hook yours and my countrymen on cigarettes ;)

Love the controversial nature if the blog!

Pradeep Bonde said...

Let us see what it does with Double Click, so far most Google acquisitions are duds.
Some digital radio company
Twitter competitor
Docs and spreadsheet

What is so great about buying Carbon credits. Read that news, they are just buying their way out of environmental problem. That is why it is PR gimmick. Electric car, come on don't Honda and Toyota know more about these things than a company which sells advertising.

Google products are not free , they make advertising money out of all of them.

" Don't be evil" is becoming just another PR gimmick.
Why doesn't the "Don't be evil" policy apply to millions of splogs and parasite site which have been designed to fleece Adword advertisers. Google is a willing and active partner in that crime. Web environmental pollution is solely result of Google policies supporting arbitrage and scrapper sites. Why Google algorithm not solve that problem. Because it is not in their interest. Aren't those more important issues.

All companies lose their focus and become dinosaurs when they start spending more time and energy and add on more indirect costs focusing on such activities. No company is immune to that.

Unknown said...

Thank you, bloggers. Dow flop.

Editor said...

I think this is a philantropic move they're making for tax benefits. (Yes PR most likely plays a role as well)

A business as big as google has the resources and means to expand.

Perhaps they are losing focus... However, for the short term they'll do just fine, and they're probably setting up to go to 600.

I'm not a buyer of google just yet, but if I were, I'd want to own deep in the money calls

Pradeep Bonde said...

it is related to this.

Pradeep Bonde said...

more here. They are just reacting to threats from Environmental lobbies.

vaniji said...


PatriotAus said...

LOL ... do you really think buying solar panels, and saving money is wasting their time.

It doesnt take any of their time, all their employees are still hard at work on all their applications, Hence all the updates that we get.

quite sad to see some one that is that close minded to a company that i hope will help us stop destroying our planet.

i will have a guess and say your American?