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Can Facebook surpass Google’s revenue? NEVER I SAY! July 21, 2010

Posted by Vasudevan in My thoughts.
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Facebook (FB) is by far the most vibrant web place today and have become a serious threat to the Internet giant Google. Facebook is expected to announce its next milestone of reaching 500 million registered users globally. Reuters reported that Facebook’s ’09 revenue neared around US$800 million and expected to cross a billion mark in the current year. While this is speculative as Facebook declined to comment, Google’s revenue for ’09 was US$ 24 billion. Experts believe that Facebook may surpass Google by 2015 if they continue the current growth in terms of users and interest from advertisers. Facebook Chief Executive Zuckerberg said at the All Things Digital conference this month that the number of advertisers on Facebook had increased by a factor of four during the past year-and-a-half years. He also said that “We can provide really good, relevant advertising to people because they tell us exactly what they are interested in, and who they know, and those people tell us what they’re interested in.”

But none of this is I think going to help Facebook to grow its revenue unless they re-look at their ad platform as the current one cannot give explosive growths, but a marginal increase. Here is why!

According to me, facebook’s Ad serving space is a blind spot.

A typical Facebook user looks at news feed, notifications, and their apps. The objective for each one is to see what their friends are upto, let them know what you are doing, and play games. Nothing less or more with majority. An Ad on the page is highly unlikely to be noticed. However, FB tried inserting Ad slates into games (starting and ending of any game) for a while, but withdrawn soon after. The only one that seems to have some traction among the FB users is the fan pages and there FB is hardly making any money.

I’m not suggesting that FB is not making any money through Ads. They are, but not on par with their user growth and barely they can come closer to Google’s revenue.

Google on the other hand is making its most money from search primarily because users are looking for something and they see a relevant result at both the columns (natural search results & sponsored). Users won’t think twice to click on the sponsored one if it is highly relevant and that’s why they are there. Hence, if FB copy paste the Google model and use it as is at their pages cannot yield results for a simple reason – a FB user is on FB not searching, just connecting/reconnecting their friends.

What can FB do to solve this? I may have a suggestion in the next few days and it will be available on this blog. Subscribe me if you are interested. 🙂

Rejuvenating Pocket PCs / Windows Mobile devices August 10, 2009

Posted by Vasudevan in My thoughts.
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windows mobile

The recent success of iPhone, Palm Pre, Android, etc along with the 3 year old BlackBerry phenomenon outplayed Pocket PCs / Windows mobile phones sadly. Partial reason for this could be that all these phones are designed by keeping a very clearly defined target users as opposed to Microsoft’s effort to repeat the Windows for Desktop phenomenon for Mobile phones by keeping the platform to suite all.  May be this was an ideal startegy 3 years back, but no longer the same.

What can make Microsoft to win back their lost ground?

According to me, there are two key reasons for Microsoft’s failure.

  1. Windows mobile’s UI sucks!
  2. Lack of freshness

Even if they address both by introducing a new, path breaking UI and bring in freshness to the device, it may not help. It will just be “another” cool mobile OS and continue to lag behind the new comers.

It may sound wierd, but still, I recommend Microsoft to open up their UI layer to the developer world and create chaos. Many device brands like LG, Samsung, HTC, etc are have great hardware, but their UI sucks as it runs on Windows Mobile. By opening the UI layer, they can leverage on it and come out with innovative UIs which can make eack Windows Mobile device unique. Consumers will then have additional choices, rather than getting succumbed to Apples and Palms. This could be a revolution in the mobile space and let the consumers decide which device to go for, no matter which Mobile OS is powering their device.  In any case, Microsoft would be benefiting as these devices are powered by their platform. Is n’t that Microsoft wants any day?

What do you think? Shower your thoughts!

Motorola is picking 50% stake in UIQ – owned by Sony October 17, 2007

Posted by Vasudevan in My thoughts, Technology news.
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Motorola has announced plans to acquire half of the company that owns the rights to UIQ, a user interface for Symbian smartphones.

                                                                                                   

There have been a couple of Motorola devices running UIQ, but today’s announcement is a clear sign that it intends to put more emphasis on this mobile platform. However, a statement from the company was weak on details. Alain Mutricy, Senior Vice President, Platforms, Motorola Mobile Devices said, “Motorola’s investment in UIQ will enable us to bring feature competitive multimedia devices to market. Its flexibility will enable us to bring devices to market that meet regional preferences or specific operator customization requirements.”  | Via BrightHand

What does this indicate? To me, only one thing! 🙂

After the recent iPhone episode, the major mobile device brands are shifting their focus to touchscreen enabled mobile devices and OS platform. Few days back Nokia announced the new S60 platform with touch screen interface. Now Motorola joints hands with UIQ – the only existing touch enabled interface for Symbian mobiles devices – to offer touch sensitive devices. So the top 3 mobile brands – Nokia, Sony Ericsson, and Motorola – will have touch screen enabled phones in future along with iPhone. Even, Samsung and LG have launched couple of them from their basket.

So its clear to me now. The mobile world ahead will soon be rich with touch screen enabled phones and its good for all those who target those devices for accessories, applications, or whatever!

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