Remember the phrase “world domination,” it was the flippant answer to the question of business strategy in the years leading up to the Internet Bubble bursting in 2000?
As it turns out, a few firms actually can argue they have done it in some spheres, and are extending domination into other realms as well.
Google Chrome had the largest share of desktop web browsers, with Microsoft Explorer second and Firefox third, globally, in January 2014. In some markets, such as the United Kingdom, Google search has 90 percent share.
In the smartphone operating system market, Android has something on the order of 70 percent share.
In fact, about 60 percent of all Internet end devices and users exchange traffic with Google servers during the course of an average day, according to Deepfield.
That finding is based on all traffic from computers, mobile devices, game consoles, home media appliances and other embedded devices. Google’s device share is much larger if traffic from computers and mobile devices, and not the other devices, is considered.
Google analytics, hosting, and advertising play some type of role in over half of all large web services or sites, according to Deepfield.
Since 2010, in fact, Google represented just six percent of Internet traffic. In 2013, Google accounted for nearly 25 percent of Internet traffic on average.
It would not be incorrect to argue that world domination is precisely what Google is attempting in a wider sense. Most people these days use the less grandiose language of “becoming a platform,” but the general principle is the same.
Few firms have been able to do what Google does, namely spending huge amounts of money to create platforms (Chrome and Android operating systems, Chrome browser, maps, search, Gmail) that drive indirect revenues.
Most firms prefer direct revenue models. And even some of Google’s direct revenue services, such as Google Fiber, are not “core” businesses for Google, but only ways to get virtually everybody connected to the Internet.
For Google, spending lots of money to create capabilities (Internet access) that support applications used largely for no incremental cost, that in turn drive the bulk of revenues, earned indirectly from advertising, makes sense. Few firms could attempt that.
So far, Google is among a very few potential names one could put on a list of companies that actually made “world domination” a successful business strategy.
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