Google Rolls Out Social Graph Opponent
In what is probably the opening salvo across Facebook’s bow, Google unveiled today another one of its "experiments." The Google project is rapidly developing into its own version of Facebook's Open Graph with the debut of the +1 Button.
Basically a "Like" button in disguise, Google’s +1 Button is a social vote of confidence stretching first across Google search, and soon to appear on website properties across the Web. Make no mistake, this is a battle of behemoths, each playing to its unique strengths.
Facebook has become the Web’s largest "walled garden," and is working hard at being more so. It’s no secret that Facebook has refused to open up its Social Graph data to Google’s Index and that Google has stepped up its campaign to set up opportunities that rival Facebook.
The introduction of the +1 Button is an "experiment" in terms of whether there will be significant uptake or not. If there is, then my guess is that Google will step up its functionality development and promotion of the Button’s presence across the Web. If on the other hand, the uptake is disappointing, Google will have gathered sufficient data to know what the next best move should be.
For Google, this is a win-win game play of the kind it has become fabled for. Should it manage to steal a march away from Facebook, it will have succeeded in discomfiting one of its greatest competitors. Facebook, last year, almost reached the $1 billion mark in ad revenue, and this year it looks set to practically double that. This is money that is coming from Google’s coffers and Google is keen to claw it back.Continued on the next page