It gets social which Google doesn’t and it gets eyeballs Google can’t access. Google is now pushing plus 1 to compete with the ubiquitous Facebook like button. Now Facebook is releasing an open source plan for data centers which many think is a shot at the folks in Mountain View.
Facebook and Google are fighting for the keys to the web and we are just bystanders. The battlefronts user information, internet identity, and the social graph.
First is the user base. Specifically this is about ad revenue and consumer information. Google is the go to place for many for search information, but Facebook is the place where they share information. And this info is power. Its one thing to have knowledge of what people are looking for. The information Facebook has is much more tailored. Every like a person has on Facebook’s site creates a refined user image. I mean you like a thing, a company, a person these dots tie specific information to you. And this is the kind of information companies want and are willing to pay serious money over.
The second front deals with our online identity. There has always been this idea of creating a online ID for business and verifying user identity. Essentially a online way to ensure you are who you say you are. Early attempts included OpenID and Microsoft Passport. In a lot of ways we have a form of traceable ID thru email, twitter accounts, Disqus, and yes even Facebook. Google working with Profiles wants to be your ID but so does Facebook.
The last ties into the first in that Google and Facebook want to be our social graph; they want to tie us to our families, friends, and acquaintances through their services. Facebook has always seem to be AOL without the dial up. It’s an improved walled garden where you and everyone in your life can share information. Google wants the same thing and that’s why they are pushing to make their applications more social. They want the information that comes from the social interaction.
So Google fears Facebook ultimately because their main business, search, can’t access this thing called social. They don’t have an algorithm to abstract information your friend has that you may want. And that hurts their other business which is selling space to advertisers. And Facebook, well I wonder despite what I just wrote, is being made more of than what it is.
But they are at war and we are the prize