Google to challenge Facebook with new social networking service ‘Google Me’
The web has erupted with a wave of rumors about a new social networking service created by web giant Google. Bloggers are saying the service (which is tentatively called "Google Me") will be in direct competition with Facebook.
The rumor went viral after Digg founder Kevin Rose (@kevinrose) reportedly tweeted, "Ok, umm, huge rumor: Google to launch facebook competitor very soon "Google Me," very credible source" on June 28.
Rose has since deleted the message but others closely involved with Google have stepped in to add fuel to the rumor fire.
According to TechCrunch, Former Facebook CTO Adam D'Angelo has confirmed the rumor. D'Angelo shared his thoughts on question-and-answer site Quora (a company which D'Angelo founded) saying, "Here is what I've pieced together from some reliable sources: This is not a rumor. This is a real project. There are a large number of people working on it. I am completely confident about this."
"They realized that Buzz wasn't enough and that they need to build out a full, first-class social network. They are modeling it off of Facebook."
"Unlike previous attempts (before Buzz at least), this is a high-priority project within Google.
They had assumed that Facebook's growth would slow as it grew, and that Facebook wouldn't be able to have too much leverage over them, but then it just didn't stop, and now they are really scared."
"This obviously has the potential to be huge, and Facebook needs a strong competitor. But even if Google has an amazing site in the pipeline, creating the next Facebook is going to be easier said than done," said TechCrunch's Jason Kincaid on the Google vs Facebook social networking battle.
Search Engine Land's Greg Sterling pondered, "Will 'Google Me' Be A Worthy Facebook Challenger Or Will It Be DOA?" A valid question after Google's previous social networking endeavors, Google Buzz and Orkut garnered lack-luster responses and low consumer retention - especially when compared to Facebook's 400 million active user base.
Inside Facebook, readers seemed happy about the news. One user commented, "great news ..i hope google kill facebook and make the largest social media in the world." Another posted, "I hope they succeed up to a point where they provide balance. It would be unhealthy for the market for one player to be dominant and in fact that becomes like Microsoft and now Apple, but balance is good."
Search Engine Land's readers were not so optimistic about the service, "Let's face it, this will probably go the same way as Google Wave and Buzz," read one comment on the site, "Facebook is far too ingrained into everyday life that I doubt very much we will see any social networking site challenge it for some time, if ever."
When asked for comment on "Google Me" a spokesperson from Google told Relaxnews, "We do not comment on rumor or speculation."
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