Google's new Platform: or, the closest I come to breaking news

by francine Hardaway on October 30, 2007

I would not like to be Microsoft(MSFT) tonight. After investing heavily in Facebook, Mr. Softie will have to “face” the fact that Google’s(GOOG) new social networking API will be a strong competitor for Facebook’s platform.

Now I don’t know squat about APIs, but I do know that anything that makes it easier for a developer to repurpose his content (or use the same widget) over several social networks will be a success. And by taking in social networks like Hi5 and Xing, Google goes global. I read all this at Gigaom, the website of a man I truly respect. I wish he had less concern for breaking this news and more for analyzing it, because he certainly would have done a better job of judging the impact of Google’s release on Facebook than I will.

I have only long experience on my side. This tells me: If something works in more than one place, it will be more useful.

From Om’s post, I see that this is useful for the developer. But let’s say I already have provided Slide or RockYou with whatever they need from me for their Facebook app. Does that mean I already have populated that app in Plaxo, LinkedIn and Xing? For me, the use, that’s a huge time saving. One thing I already hate about being on multiple social networks is having to GO THERE and respond to things. If the same widget did it everywhere, I’d have more time for dogs, yoga, and helping entrepreneurs get going.

Oh, and Google hit 700 today. Even my dog knows this was the reason.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Mo Kakwan October 31, 2007 at 2:04 am

I’m pretty psyched about it. After developing for the Facebook platform I know I wouldn’t like to go through the tedium of having to work out kinks for each platform. The Facebook platform is constantly breaking. They’re updating all the time and I’ll get messages from users about how something isn’t working and the problem isn’t with our code but rather Facebook breaking things while trying to update. Imagining if that was happening on separate platforms and I’d have to juggle different implementations makes my head spin. Google’s platform has streamlined that down. I’ll develop first on Google and then go and look at other niches and do a cost to value comparison before I jump in coding to support them. Which probably means most soc. nets are just going to want to support Google anyways rather then make their own API.

For a social landscape perspective. I think the biggest freakout should be coming from Facebook. They’ve invested SO MUCH value into the social graph. That’s the ONLY thing that’s keeping users there. Google has such an expansive userbase for all their products they’re going to suck the life out of facebook (and their social graph). The only choice they’ll have is to join and support the Google api or wither away. That’s probably what will really make Microsoft upset.

All of Facebook features are technically easy to implement. Facebook was slick back in college but now that I’m out and about, I’m not too tied to it. I have maybe 30 some friends on facebook that I’ve made out in the valley and they don’t seem to comment as much or keep in contact as much as my 300 or so friends back home in school.

Sorry for the huge rant! *laugh*

francine hardaway October 31, 2007 at 6:27 am I wasn’t off the mark! Thanks for making your comment. You ought to do really well on the Google platform :-)

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