is How The Public Has Joined Hands To Kill Google
from the very near, post-Google future, after the abusive,
privacy-rape, political psy-ops known as 'Google' has finally been
made almost all its money from ads. It was a booming
business — until it wasn’t. Here’s how things looked right before
the most spectacular crash the technology industry had ever seen.
crumbling of Google’s cornerstone
was Google’s only unambiguous win, as well as itsprimary
source of revenue, so when Amazonrapidly
surpassed Googleas the top product search
destination, Google’s foundations began to falter.Asmany
notedat the time, the online
advertising industry experienced a major shift from search to
discovery in the mid-2010s.
Google protected its monopoly on the dying search advertising
market, Facebook — Google’s biggest competitor in the online
advertising space — got on theright
side of the trendand dominated online
advertising with its in-feed native display advertising.
late 2015, Apple — Google’s main competitor in the mobile
space — added a feature to their phones and tablets that allowed
users to block ads.
running iOS were responsible for anestimated
75%of Google’s revenue from mobile search
ads, so by making this move, Apple was simultaneously weighing in
decisively on the great ad blocking debate of the 2010s and
dealing a substantial blow to thefuture
of online advertising.
year later, as the internet went mobile, so too did ad blocking.
The number of people blocking ads on a mobile device grew102%
from 2015 to 2016; by the end of 2016, an estimated 16% of
smartphone users globally wereblocking
adswhen browsing the internet on a mobile
device. The number wasas
high as 25%for desktop and laptop users
in the United States, a country that accounted for47%
of Google’s revenue.
early 2017, Google announced its plans to build an ad blocker into
its popular Google Chrome browser. Google’s ad blocker would only
block ads that were deemed unacceptable by theCoalition
For Better Ads, effectively allowing the company to use its
dominant web browser to strengthen its already dominant
after making this desperate andlegally
questionablemove, it would quickly become
clear to Google that even though ads were getting better, ad
blocking numbers wouldcontinue
to rise. Google had given even more people a small taste of
what an ad-free internet experience could look like.
company discovered that it wasn’t just annoying ads that people
didn’t like; it was ads in general.
key platform where Google served ads was YouTube, which it bought
in 2006 and quickly turned into one of its biggest entities. But
even with asixth
of the worldvisiting this video-sharing
behemoth every month, YouTubenever
became profitable. In an attempt to combat the effect of ad
blockers, YouTube launched an ad-free subscription model in late
2015, but the subscription numbers wereunderwhelming.
of usersreported a lack of trust as their
reason for not clicking banner ads and 33% found them completelyintolerable.
These figures painted a pretty grim picture for the sustainability
of online advertising, but especially for Google’s position within
mighty engine had started to sputter.
chance to pivot, and how Google missed it
losing a major portion of their audience and annoying the rest
wasn’t bad enough, Google also failed to get ahead of one of the
biggest shifts in technology’s history. They recognized the
importance of artificial intelligence but their approach missed
the mark. Since Google’s search pillar had become unstable, a lot
was riding on the company’s strategy for artificial intelligence.
will move from mobile first to an AI first world.”
then-CEO Sundar Pichaifamously
predictedin 2016 that “the next big
step will be for the very concept of the ‘device’ to fade away”and
time, the computer itself — whatever its form factor — will be
an intelligent assistant helping you through your day. We will
move from mobile first to an AI first world.”
ability to acknowledge the coming trend and still fail to land in
front of it reminded many observers of its catastrophic failures
in the booming industries of social media and instant messaging.
in 2014, Amazon released a product called Amazon Echo, a small
speaker that could sit in your home and answer questions, perform
tasks, and buy things online for you. The Echo was asmash
success. Google released its copycat product, Google Home,
two years later, but it was alreadytoo
late to catch up, and had no clear revenue strategy.
— the assistant that lived inside the Echo — on the other hand,
was quickly integrated into several products and services, and its
monetization model was clear, viable, and most importantly
future-friendly. The Echo made it easy to order products through
Amazon, and every time someone used an Echo to purchase something,
Amazon made money.
extended the reach of their virtual assistant by building it into
Android, but doing so still didn’t provide an answer for how the
technology would generate enough revenue to sustain Google’s
expanding repertoire of expensive innovations.
ads relied on screens, yet voice interaction subverted screens
entirely. Google briefly tried playing audio ads with the Google
Home, but consumers werefar
from receptive. Investorsstarted
to voice their concerns in 2017, but Sundar Pichai told them
not to worry, leaving them to assume that Google would use their
age-old strategy and analyze users’ voice searches so that users
could be shown more suitable ads on devices with screens.
in early 2017proclaimedthat
“Alexa Just Conquered CES. The World is Next.” Amazon then made
third party manufacturers, putting even more distance between the
two companies. Amazonhad
already beaten Google once before, holding 54% of the cloud
computing market (compared to Google’s 3%) in 2016, and they were
just getting started.
its peak, Google had a massive and loyal user-base across a
staggering number of products, but advertising revenue was the
glue that held everything together. As the numbers waned, Google’s
core began to buckle under the weight of its vast empire.
was a driving force in the technology industry ever since its
disruptive entry in 1998. But in a world where people despised
ads, Google’s business model was not innovation-friendly, and they
missed several opportunities to pivot, ultimately rendering their
numerous grand and ambitious projects unsustainable. Innovation
costs money, and Google’s main stream of revenue had started to
a few short years, Google had gone from a fun, commonplace verb to
a reminder of how quickly a giant can fall.