What is Google Up to with its Cloud Platform?
Google has recently gotten into the domain registrar and the cloud computing businesses with Google Domains and Google Cloud Platform. With their domain registration and their site hosting offerings, Google now provides everything that a startup like a Netflix or an Instagram would need to start.
While the move into domain registration and high ending application-friendly hosting are rather shocking and could be somewhat confusing to the casual onlooker, the ones that watch the technology industry closely will find it very much within Google’s business model and a logical next step for their them.
What is Google Doing?
The first thing is to understand is what Google’s business model really is. While it may be easy to think that Google’s major profit drivers is their Operating System (by making the Android Operating System) or a Smart Phone Company (making the Nexus line of Android devices), but their real profit driver is through advertising. With that being the case, why would Google be interested in getting into domain registration and high end application hosting?
Simply put: User Data.
Google has tried to obtain this kind of data in the past. In 2003, Google acquired Blogger to get in on the social blogging craze. The less transparent move by Google came in 2011 when Google unveiled Google+, Google’s own social media platform. All of these moves were motivated by a move to get better user data for Google’s ad platforms.
Competing with Amazon
Understand that Google moving into cloud computing is not to compete with providers like GoDaddy (even though Google makes the comment that the Google Cloud Platform can be used for “simple websites“), rather it is a way to compete against offerings from Amazon’s cloud storage service Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). Companies like Instagram and Netflix use Amazon S3 to power their platforms. One of the things that makes Amazon S3 so appealing is the scalability and the low entry cost. By Google getting into the cloud services arena, they can provide robust services while also being able to (allegedly) mine userdata.
Will it Work?
It already is. Google already has Snapchat as one of its users. Being one of the most hotly discussed social media platforms at this moment (particularly from an advertising standpoint), it is very interesting that Google was able to woo them over.
Am I Crazy?
Maybe I’m a conspiracy theorist to assume that Google would create a service like this to control or acquire userdata future social media platforms. What are your thoughts?