Surely the battles between Google and Facebook will continue inthe market space that is dominated by person-to-person interaction.Perhaps, however, Google is laying a foundation to claim thecorporate market for multi-function and highly configurable socialnetworks, in a latter-day version of the Apple vs. Microsoft wars.I recommend a reading of both these blog articles below.http://www.dachisgroup.com/2011/07/social-business-stack/http://www.dachisgroup.com/2011/07/google-plus-and-the-enterprise/
The initial release of Google+ in lateJune precipitated a whole new round of blogging and commentary onthe Google vs. Facebook battle, focused almost exclusively on theC2C and B2C sides of social networking. Certainly, the 10+ millionor so invited early adopters are primarily individuals, and theirfeedback has been generally positive. Potentially more interestingin the long run, however, are the ideas embodied in two blogs lastweek from the Dachis Group, suggesting that perhaps the true futureof Google+ is its potential evolution as a cloud-based enterpriseinfrastructure. “The Social Business Stack: The Elements” by DionHinchcliffe summarizes the necessary components with a compellinggraphic outlining the layers and their interconnections. Hiscolleague Jed Singer observes that Google has asked businesses tohold off creating “personal pages” for their brands or companynames, and has been promising a plan for business pages with futurereleases. Here is Singer’s hypothesis: “If engagement within the enterprise isone of the objectives for Google+, then it would really be takingaim at corporate intranets, rather than social networking siteslike Facebook. Sophisticated intranets can be costly, and ifGoogle+ can create an effective toolset for businesses internally -marrying email, with news streams, with video conferencing, withscreensharing, with whiteboarding – it could be a huge win.” Singer goes on to assess Google’sprospects for delivering functionality in all of these spaces, andconcludes that they have some pretty strong capabilities. To date,internal corporate use of social networks has been more or lessstalled in the domain of applications such as the highlyinteractive Yammer, or corporate wikis for shared content. Googlehas the potential to marry both kinds of functionality withcollaborative elements including the pending Google Meeting,supporting videoconferencing for up to 10 users, and theever-expanding Google Docs, which now includes not onlyspreadsheets, documents, and presentations, but also Android-basedmobile delivery.