Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Erik Naggum died

My longtime friend Erik Naggum just died. I won't say much about him here although there is a lot to be said about him, but he was a near and dear friend that I was in contact with on an almost daily basis. I will miss him very much for the rest of my life.

Google voice etc.: The plot thickens

Ars Technica is reporting that Google Voice looks good, and that Google both has aquired about a million phone numbers, and that they are supporting number portability. No surprises there, but certainly interesting.

Google now has a bunch of tools to facilitate personal communications and interactions: Talk, Voice, Docs, Mail, Picasa, Orkut, etc. Googe Wave is not yet a product, but in many ways it is the most interesting of the lot. One can only wonder what comes next.

All of the products I mention above will probably consolidate somewhat through incremental improvements, but there are obvious synergies to be tapped here that requires more than slow consolidation. The main question is therefore not if Google will tap into these, but when and how. My guess is that there will be no "big bang" unification projects, but that the services will converge over some time. The end result however, will be like this:

  • It will cover all the bases: For most users will be (almost) no need to escape from the Google universe whatever their communications and cooperation needs are.
  • It will be tremendously open for third party innovation: This will enhance the point made above, but will do so by enabling differentiation to be performed by third party developers rather than Google itself. Very cost effective, very useful, and something Google already has ample experience with already.
If I was working for a Telco I would be afraid. Oops :-)