Google CEO Eric Schmidt faced a series of lame and sycophantic questions from analyst Alexia Quadrani at the Bear Stearns Media Conference. (The big sell-side firms still don't understand how to run conferences effectively.) As a result, most of his comments were a rehash of old material. But here's what he said about the difference between Google and Yahoo!:
(Quotes are from the CCBN StreetEvents transcript.)
Both companies have executed very well. It's difficult to say things about them; I'll let them define their strategy and how they… their future, which I think in their case is very bright.
…we run the company based on innovation and end user satisfaction. And so the whole theory of Google, what we do every day is we focus on end user value creation. So the test of a product is not how much money can it make, it's how many end users can it satisfy. And when we say end users, we mean everyone and they are on the order of 6 billion plus or minus.
So we define our target market as the end users of the world who we believe are becoming more and more online. And with that, going back to the expression of technology Company versus content Company; although there's a blur between the two, we focus on building extraordinarily disruptive technology that enables end user power around information. And we have been fortunate enough to discover very, very effective ways to monetize or make money from that. But the two are really linked.
..with respect to the new products, we do not do the traditional planning that you would imagine; cost of capital, return, ROI kind of thing. We look more for end user satisfaction.