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So Microhoo or Yahsoft?

So Microhoo or Yahsoft?

So Microhoo or Yahsoft?

There's been a lot of hype around Microsoft's bid for Yahoo! and a fair mix of reactions from "Wow! I think they can give Google a good run for their money" to "I'm going to ditch my Yahoo! account if that happens". So, where do you sit? This acquisition is all about Microsoft versus Google. I've said to many people that I have no more of an issue with either Google or Microsoft than most other people do. Of course, each company has it's fair share of fans and anti-fans, but I'm going to try and remain objective. Personally speaking, I think it could be a good move and I know by saying that I open myself up to all kinds of abuse. Although technically Google do not have a real monopoly (we all have a choice to use or not use them), they are in a position that is normally only benefited by companies that do have a monopoly. Who do you go to when you want to search the internet? Who do you "think" has the biggest cross-section of world and user data? Who do you think is in the best position right now to tell any business what you looked at on the internet over the last year, or what your interests may be? Ok, the last thing may not be happening in reality but it could happen... so very easily. Perhaps the biggest thing for me is trust. Generally speaking, the larger a company gets the more powerful it becomes, and it is power that is behind many a good company turning bad. But it's competition that keeps the dark side of power at bay, and there isn't much real competition for Google at the moment. So while many consider them to be trustworthy today, we don't know what's going to happen tomorrow. Competition could create a "we're better for you than them" fight, and the only real winner is us, the users. Google has been excellent at innovating (and in several cases buying companies that have done it for them), and in the past Yahoo! has had its fair share of innovations - remember that before Google came along, Yahoo! was the search engine of choice. I would personally suggest that Microsoft has innovated far less than Google or Yahoo! and have generally bought companies or learned from others. But with Microsoft's weight and Yahoo!'s innovation, we could see someone finally standing alongside Google and punching at the same weight. But we want more innovation please and less copying! Yahoo! have turned down offers from Microsoft in the past, and probably quite rightly given their strength at the time, but their previous year has not been so good and the outlook for the next year is not much prettier, so the timing may not get better for them. At the end of last year I made a statement in a company rally that Microsoft had continued to fall behind Google over the previous 12 months, and that they would need to do something major to at least realign themselves. I wasn't quite thinking of the scale of a $42bn Yahoo! acquisition but I guess it would be a start. So, what do you think? Am I mad? What's good, bad or ugly about this possible deal?

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6 Comments
Not applicable
Microhoo sounds rather catchy.
Grafter
Amid the buzz around the US nominations I've just seen a YouTube video that sums up why Microsoft need to do this Barack Obama pays Google a visit at their headquarters and shares a platform with Eric That's one heck of a powerful search engine! http://technorati.com/videos/youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3Dm4yVlPqeZwo EDIT: Get my Googlers right
Grafter
I just don't think it will work. If they don't get tied up in litigation until it falls through, consider these points: Yahoo! used to be very good. Not only did they have a good search engine, but they also offered the best "portal" style services as well as many other extras (games, etc.). What I see happening is that they are losing focus -- sure, they're buying other companies and startups, but there's nothing joined up about what theyre doing. They need a kick up the backside to get them where they need to be, which is back innovating, creating communities and value-added services on the same massive scale they had. Microsoft won't provide this by buying them, in fact I would guess that it will make things worse. Microsoft have shown that they just aren't very good at doing the online thing. Their search engine sucks, their webmail was bought in. Their knock-offs of web communities such as Spaces are terrible. Their OS is mediocre (I'm talking about Vista, XP is really good), they do however make an awesome set of productivity applications (Office, Visio, etc.). Buying Yahoo! would essentially for them be an admission of failure, and added to which, Silicon Valley don't like to see innovation by aquisition, they prefer to see it in-house or buying start-ups. Google restrict what they do to an arena, and even this arena is tied in to search almost everywhere. Google have 3 areas they work in: Search/ads, Gmail/Chat/Communities, and "other" which is the blue sky stuff. The weighting is as such that they always remain focused. I think that Yahoo! is a valid competitor in the spaces that they both share, but Microsoft is just a bit player. In summary, I think Yahoo! should fix its own problems, and I don't think Microsoft is the person to do it. My 2p Gricey
Dabbler
"Although technically Google do not have a real monopoly (we all have a choice to use or not use them)," Well, with Google Adsense appearing on virtually all of the websites that Joe Public looks at daily, we don't really have any choice but to use them though. Google have garnered some criticism over their withholding of Adsense revenue from smaller content providers (you need to accrue $100 of Adsense revenue before it can be redeemed). What this means is that Google presently has $370m in the bank of non-redeemed Adsense revenue which it can choose to invest. The Microsoft & Yahoo partnership (if it indeed occurs) will serve to keep Google on its toes, increase Adsense revenue (and better terms) to content providers and ultimately the consumer will benefit. Like Brown needs Cameron, and Manchester United need Chelsea, Google need a strong Microsoft in opposition... Matt Grest
Not applicable
Although you'll see in the media this weekend that the Yahoo! board are set to reject MS's offer, I can bet that will not be the end of it. Yahoo!'s share price rocketed on the news of MS's offer. So I'm guessing share holders liked the idea, and that means MS will just try and work the deal through the share holders instead - looking to either force the board into it, or forcing changes at the board level via the share holders. This is not the last we have heard of it, guarenteed.
Not applicable
M$ is a corporation oriented at the revenue, technology and innovation always comes second to them. You can tell it by looking at almost every single piece of software they released. Their software never been the best on the market either (at least for my experience), but sadly they have a lion share of it. It would be sad to see Yahoo go... I've been their fan for more than 10 years now, but if M$ buys them, they will die for me...