Wow, what can I say. That is a pretty impressive sum of money. I read this before going to bed last night on Digg, but I thought it was fake. Turns out that Microsoft has just extended a 44 billion dollar offer for Yahoo!
To be honest, Google has really handed Yahoo! their hand in search. I personally don’t know anyone that uses Yahoo to do search, although I’ve been told it’s still fairly popular in Asia. I have friends over at Yahoo!, and I once showed them my web logs from my blog indicating that something like 98% of all searches originate from Google. They refused to believe they were true, but that’s how the ball rolls over here. Granted, the readers of this blog are biased towards the technical side, but I think the numbers are fairly indicative of things in North America, as I’m sure most of your logs (if you have them) also would show.
I think Yahoo! Messenger is a actually a better product that Google Talk, possibly because they were in the market first and they have more contacts available on an IM client. I think the technology of Google Talk (that is XMPP and Jabber) is far more attractive than what Yahoo! uses, and wish more people would adopt it for IM and other things.
Yahoo! is finding it increasingly hard to compete against Google, as evidenced by recently announced layoffs and declining growth by Yahoo!.
While I’m not really that confident in either company, I think it might be a good play. Microsoft dominates the desktop space on the PC, and Yahoo has a fairly solid internet presence. If you combine the two maybe you can better leverage the capabilities of both companies. I know that both companies seem to think online advertising models are the way of the future (something I don’t necessarily agree with, as I mentioned in yesterday’s post), so if that’s the route they want to go then it’s a smart move. However, I really think the next wave in advertising will involve mobile devices. Google’s Android is setting the stage for them to enter that space rapidly, but I haven’t heard anything from either Yahoo! or Microsoft regarding their efforts. It seems likely they will be last out of the gate, which could prove disastrous for both of them.
Apple iPhone: mobile devices are the next big step in advertising
While this merger is still just talk at this point, if it goes through it could be a great opportunity for Google to tighten the noose during the multi-month shuffle that will no doubt come about from such a larger merger. Only time will tell has this plays out.