Friday, May 13, 2011

The battle for The Web has begun

The Internet has been around for about 27 years now and the World Wide Web has now existed for two decades. It is part of the daily life for more & more of us, with a growing number of people living, loving and working online.

However, unless you’re very young or old, a member of a profession that doesn’t allow you to contribute or you’ve recently unsubscribed from one… you’re probably a member of a social network. And for most countries in the Western world, this means you’re signed-up to Facebook.

Here in the UK Facebook is used by about 30 million people, having grown its numbers by 4 million in 9 months ….which means that it can count over 50% of the UK population as members!

Facebook is now the site we use to catch-up with friends and family members, engage with brands (who are increasingly seeing the value of being part of the online conversation), play games and manage their everyday lives. On top of this, if you haven’t already, you will soon be: shopping online and sharing your purchases with your network of acquaintances. It’s even managed to pull-off a partnership with Microsoft, who 3 years ago took a small ($240m) share in the company at an important time in its growth, which then meant Facebook was instantly worth $15bn! (Its now worth close to $50bn)

But… that’s not enough for Facebook, it wants more… wants to own your entire online experience.

Unfortunately for them there’s one fly in the digital ointment. Another company is in the way…. One who already have around 60% of the global search engine market, one of the most popular email services and provide the only real (and free) competition for Microsoft’s Office suite and Apple’s iPhone operating system…. Google.

This rivalry (or jealousy) has never really been as open as it has been in the last day or so, with the recent expose that Facebook was the ‘mysterious client’ behind Global PR agency Burson-Marsteller’s attempted smearing of one of Google’s Gmail services called Social Circle (who up until 48 hours ago, very little people had even heard of)

So now the entire Internet industry’s attention has focused in on the competition between these two giants of online as they compete for the attention, thought processes and wallets of World’s entire Internet population. Those 30 million UK users suddenly look a drop in the ocean when compared with 2 billion….
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