Google to Buy Adobe?
On the flip side of the coin, he said Google is already making some pretty significant investments in AJAX with Google Web Toolkit and Google Gears. With Android, they also set up a mobile platform which could use their existing AJAX assets as well, he said. Hammond also noted Google would be challenged on how to get broad distribution of a player to compete with Flash, which is what Microsoft is wrestling with now.IDC's Melissa Webster threw some cold water on this theory, noting that Google doesn't need to have its own technology to improve playback and user experience. "They can use Adobe's stuff [player if they need one at some point; streaming servers if they decide to do real streaming; online editing tools; etc.]," Webster told eWEEK. Sasha Kouznetsov, founder and president of Web presentation software maker, Spresent, also doubted Google's entry into the market, noting that Google would be more likely to endorse the open-source SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) foundation technology. Hammond said Google could be just as likely to buy Adobe. "Why build your own when you can buy something that's ubiquitous in the market already?" Hammond said. Valdes said he's been thinking about that possibility for awhile, noting that Adobe is a midsize company competing with heavyweights and that Microsoft long ago set the Flash proprietor in its sights. A Google-Adobe union would give Google rich Web app market share and allow Adobe to grow its business. Webster doused this theory, saying that Google doesn't need to buy Adobe to accomplish what it wants with rich interaction. She added that the packaged software biz that is Adobe's mainstay would be a distraction for Google. Whether Google pulls the trigger on Adobe or not is anyone's guess, but Hammond noted that it would be an interesting response to Microsoft's impending purchase of Yahoo. That much is certain.
"The obvious answer would be through YouTube, so that's where I'd keep a close watch," Hammond said. "Since they just went through the process of re-encoding media into H.264 to support the iPhone, they could in theory create an H.264 compatible player without screwing that deal up."