Google (GOOG) was just named the more popular brand name over its high-profile competitors: Apple (AAPL), Facebook (FB) and Twitter. The poll was conducted by major US news sources and does little to quell the intense competition happening between the three giants. All the poll's results really tell is that Google is still king in the minds of Americans. Unfortunately, for the company, this is not always the case with consumer's social media decisions.
Google+ continues to lag far behind Facebook and Twitter in social networking, and none of its Android technology based phones have made it to the echelon of Apple's iPhone. With tech companies, longevity and success simply depends on the continuation of innovative products. Sony (SNE), for instance, has long been a player in the international tech world, but its Walkman is still what the company is known for. Then the iPod and iPhone followed, and well, now Apple is world's first billion-dollar company.
Google's Android devices have done well to challenge Apple in the smart phone industry, but it has not wowed any consumers with an entirely innovative platform. In fact, Microsoft (MSFT) has taken Google to court several times now for infringing on old patents to design its Android platform. Ironically enough, as it stands, Microsoft earns more profits from Android sales than from sales of its own Windows 7 phone line, due, in large, to past court settlements.
I think you may know where I'm going with this. Google needs a monster in the market. It simply won't corral any new investors to buy its nearly $626 stock (which slide nearly 5% just this week, by the way) if it continues on a status quo mentality.
But, we knew Google was not going to sit still. And so, when the company released new information about its long-awaited project, Google Glasses, the Internet community seemed to get that old Google fever back again.
I don't remember anything shooting across the web this fast since news of Apple's iPad several years ago. Project Glass is Google's futuristic attempt to create an entire new world of social exploration. The project was revealed by Google with an impressive video entitled "One Day…" and will allow users to access their social mediums through a special set of eyeglasses. Everyday applications like maps, e-mail, and messaging will be available and accessible through the specs.
If you don't know about the glasses, you're probably not too active on the Internet so let me just tell that the buzz has been strong. From YouTube parodies to science fiction writers weighing in to experts doubting the vision, Project Glass is bringing Google's name back to the forefront of computing innovation, a place where it certainly belongs.
There are, of course, nebulous details concerning the entire endeavor. Will Google run the glasses with the Android network? Will there be no connection between the glasses and the company's line of smart phones? We don't know and Google is not running its mouth. Instead, it will sit back and rigorously test its new product, as the company continues to put out competitive products for current platforms.
So, what does all this futuristic dreaming do for Google and its stock? Well, for one, it shows that the company, as always, is thinking ahead. Google, unfortunately, has a knack for cancelling its projects before completion, but the buzz around Project Glass may already be too strong. We will have to wait and see.
Either way, as analysts have pointed out, Google is one of the first companies to dream up the next step after tablet computing. Even as it awaits the release of its other exciting products, Google is dreaming far past its own doings. You can think of it as Google doing what Apple did a decade ago when it promised an iPhone while everyone was using flip phones, Palms and early model Blackberrys.
The real possibility is that the new project could change the world. It may not, but it could and what better company to deal with that heavy crown of possibility than Google. What the company is working toward is the next step in computing evolution. Someone is going to produce it; the tech world just simply does not rest. So here's Google taking its shot, and starting early which may have been a key reason for the success of the iPhone and iPad and while competitors are still chasing Apple's innovation.
Google has primarily made its profits from advertising campaigns. In this, it has been as successful as anyone that has come before. But, the company continues to explore new avenues for profit. Its items, like Android-based phones, are selling at a great pace, but so are smart phones across the board, unless you are Research In Motion Limited (RIMM). It will need a monster product moving forward and it seems like its tablets may not cut it.
Look, I brought up the new poll in the beginning of this article to remind you that Google needs no introduction. It's the most familiar brand name in America and possible the world at large. So when Google introduces what may possibly be the next big thing in micro and social technologies, the world will listen. There will be supporters and there will be doubters. Apple faced all of this when it started sharing secrets about the iPhone before the first one was released, if you remember.
It only takes one one new, amazing innovation that a competitor has not produced. That's how the tech world seems to function and Google is stepping up. We will all have to wait and see how the project turns out and when (if ever) it may be commercially available. That will determine a great deal of Google's stock movement, but we can be assured that the company is working to create the next big thing. And they will need it if they want to stay America's first brand and compete with an Apple company that seems to keep growing with each new iPhone and iPad released.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.