Monday, July 26, 2004

Where Google is going with Picasa and Hello

Picture this: you send your best friend a picture from your weekend trip to the beach. Along with the picture, you lament that you would rather have been on a date. You and your friend both get served a Google AdSense ad for a Web dating service.

People have been asking "Why is Google paying big bucks for Picasa and then giving away the software for free?" Put Picasa together with Hello which is a peer-to-peer messaging service. Hello comes with Picasa. Google controls both. Are you getting the picture, or do you need Picasa to enhance the image for you?

The big bucks are going to come from users clicking the ads that are going to be served up at some point with their image sharing and instant messaging. Who has a better  handle on context-sensitive advertising than Google? Nobody; not by a long shot.

Some of this is hinted at on WebProNews which links to some interesting threads at Webmasterworld. If you like rank speculation, take a look. As one post in the thread said: "Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and lots and lots of others are all going to make lots and lots of money with this. Compete? Heck, they'll all be needed to meet demand."