Google Must Not Ignore This Opportunity

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2010-02-01 Print this article Print

5. A one-stop shop

When users want to download music on an Android-based device, they need to go to's app to do it. When they want to check out some new applications, they need to head to the Android Market. On the iPhone, it's a different experience. Users can simply open iTunes and download songs, movies, TV shows, podcasts and applications from one place. The experience is far more convenient and it doesn't detract from using the device. That stands in stark contrast to Android-based devices. Google must address its software's lack of convenience.

6. The entertainment industry would welcome it

Record labels and film studios don't like how powerful Apple is. If they really want to make money, they're forced to play nice with Apple. Google could change that dynamic. With a viable competitor in the market, Apple's dominance of the entertainment business could slip away, leaving Google to pick up the pieces. Don't discount the entertainment industry. It plays an important role in all this.

7. It's a necessity

Although Google doesn't seem to understand this, the search giant has no choice but to deliver an iTunes competitor. The mobile industry is quickly becoming an Apple-dominated space. All the other vendors are falling in line behind it. If Google wants to retain second place and possibly compete for first against Apple, it must deliver an iTunes competitor. Copying Apple's strategy isn't the worst idea.

8. Google wants to beat Apple

Although both companies have had a relatively uncompetitive history, they're gunning for each other now. Since Google branched out from search and advertising, the company has competed with Apple in the mobile space. And with the announcement of Chrome OS, it's also trying to steal market share away from Apple on the OS front. Now that Android is being deployed on vendors' tablets, Google has its sights set on Apple once again. The competition is heating up. Google needs to capitalize. It can do that with the help of an iTunes competitor.

9. It builds loyalty

As Apple has found, offering iTunes in major releases keeps customers coming back. When a user decides to add music to a particular iTunes account, it's likely he or she will use that account on every Apple device the user buys in the future. And considering all that content is already in one place, the user might be less likely to choose other software to manage music, movies and other content. Google needs to realize that. It must understand that if its own software can deliver a better experience than iTunes, it can lock in customers who have opted against Apple products. And most importantly, as long as they like the iTunes competitor, they will stick with it. Loyalty to unique products is extremely profitable in the tech business. Google can't forget that.

10. Time is running out

The longer Google waits to deliver an iTunes competitor, the harder it will be for the company to catch up to Apple. Time is simply not on Google's side. When users compare the iPhone or the iPad with any comparably equipped Android-based smartphone or tablet, they will undoubtedly see a real convenience gap between the competing devices. Apple's products make consuming content quick and easy. Google's software makes the process a headache. As more users figure that out, it will only hurt Google. Time is running out on delivering an iTunes competitor, Google. Don't forget it.

Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at

Submit a Comment

Loading Comments...
Manage your Newsletters: Login   Register My Newsletters

Rocket Fuel