Jeff Bercovici:抛弃Google+,Google会更好

Jeff Bercovici:抛弃Google+,Google会更好

如我们所知,Google+似乎已经完蛋了。其主管维克·冈多特拉(Vic Gundotra)正从谷歌离职,TechCrunch则称巨大的变化正在进行中。这一社交网络已诞生三年,如今正被重新定义,或是被降级。它将从一款产品成为一个平台,而谷歌将停止尝试将 Google+接入其他所有谷歌产品和服务。

Jeff Bercovici:
抛弃Google+,Google会更好

 

【作者】Jeff Bercovici

【发表日期】2014年04月26日

如我们所知,Google+似乎已经完蛋了。其主管维克·冈多特拉(Vic Gundotra)正从谷歌离职,TechCrunch则称巨大的变化正在进行中。这一社交网络已诞生三年,如今正被重新定义,或是被降级。它将从一款产品成为一个平台,而谷歌将停止尝试将 Google+接入其他所有谷歌产品和服务。

这真是一个好消息。这对消费者来说是个好消息,因为消费者们再也不必为了使用他们需要的功能而被迫注册一项他们从未想要的服务。这对我们这些用谷歌搜索交通和新事物的人来说也是好消息,对我们来说,更新Google+上的简介以满足谷歌越来越具体的要求简直是一项多余的负担。

事实上,一旦这阵尴尬的刺痛过去,这最终对谷歌来说也将是一个好消息。Google+之所以失败,不仅是因为产品执行过程的拙劣,这也是谷歌在战略上错误思考的结果。

再说,对谷歌而言,Google+基本上已经走进了死胡同,将其抛弃反而会有好处。原因如下:

1.谷歌将Google+推荐给用户的尝试无异于请人发起反垄断诉讼。逼迫用户在使用他们需要的服务前接受一款他们并不需要的产品,这被称为捆绑,在某些情况下,这是非法的。谷歌笨拙地对Google+进行整合的行为是否逾越了这根红线还有待争论。联邦贸易委员会曾调查过这个问题,但没采取行动。尽管如此,谷歌经常发现自己面前站着不少的反垄断监管者,但它还根本没有在他们鼻子前面挥舞大红色斗篷。

2.当初根本没必要强迫用户使用Google+。有人提出,Google+能极大地提升每个使用谷歌产品和服务的用户的价值,因为对打广告的人来说,他们将能被允许使用整个谷歌系统的数据来追踪和分析用户,而且公司还能利用“+1”按钮在每个页面上追踪用户。但如果要做到这些,你又何需一个全新的社交网络?与其把Google+打造成一个统治一切的至尊魔戒,为何不从Gmail上下手?Gmail早已通过非强制的手段自然而然地赢得了五亿多用户。(事实上,根据Recode的报道,Google+的登陆组件可能会分离出来成为一个独立的产品。)

还有人提出,如果谷歌搜索不能接入用户的社交数据,这对谷歌搜索将有所不利。但即使是Facebook,也没找到如何把用户的社交资料转变为有价值的搜索产品的方法。

3.比起打造一个包含成千上万种不同功能的超级产品,打造一堆独立的产品是一个更好的途径。至少这是Facebook在后来得出的结论。数年来,马克·扎克伯格(Mark Zuckerberg)曾尝试着在同一把伞下做所有事情,他现在则专注于对Facebook旗下的产品进行分类,打造类似于Messenger、Paper、Instagram和WhatsApp这类提供“单一目的和顶级体验”的产品。

将产品分类不仅能降低潜在新用户的注册门槛,这也是因为一个专注于其分内之事的产品往往做得更好。这是Google+前成员丹尼·克莱顿(Danny Crichton)从那段工作经历中学到的经验:

我深入研究过每个创建人的经历,从他们的经历中,我学到的最关键的一点就是:专注绝对是一切。一旦你有了两个目标,即使其中一个目标较为次要,你在解决问题的时候也会开始走弯路,你的产品会深受其害。

原文发表于Forbes 福布斯中文网

译 李哲峰      校 陈岳林

 

 

G+

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原文:

Jeff Bercovici, Forbes Staff
I cover technology with an emphasis on social and digital media.

TECH | 4/25/2014 @ 4:33PM

Google Will Be Better Off Minus Google+

 

Google+ as we know it appears to be finished. Vic Gundotra, the executive in charge, is leaving the company, and TechCrunch says big changes are afoot. The three-year-old social network is being redefined — demoted? — from a product to a platform, and Google GOOG -1.71% will stop trying to infuse it into all its other products and services.

This is great news. It’s great for consumers, who shouldn’t have to sign up for a service they never asked for just to be able to use the ones they actually care about. It’s great for those of us who depend on Google search for traffic or new business, and for whom maintaining a G+ profile that satisfied Google’s ever more demanding specifications was an unwanted burden.

And, ultimately, once the sting of embarrassment fades, it will be great for Google. The failure of Google+ wasn’t just a matter of botched execution; it was a result of misguided strategic thinking. Plus has been mostly a cul-de-sac for Google, and it will be better off for having emerged from it. Here’s why.

G+ (Photo credit: clasesdeperiodismo)
1. Google’s attempts to push Plus on users were a standing invitation for antitrust lawsuits. Forcing consumers to accept a product they don’t want in order to get access to one they do want is called tying, and under some circumstances it’s illegal. It’s debatable whether Google’s heavy-handed integrations of Plus crossed that line; the Federal Trade Commission looked into the matter but didn’t take action. Still, Google finds itself in front of antitrust regulators often enough as it is without waving a big red cape in front of their noses.

2. There was no need to force Plus on users in the first place. The argument for it was Plus would make users of every Google product and service immensely more valuable to advertisers by allowing the company to track and profile them across the entire suite, and to follow them to every page with a “+1″ button on it. But why do you need a whole new social network for that? Rather than forge Google+ as the One Ring To Rule Them All, why not just do it with Gmail, which has more than 500 million users it acquired organically, not through coercion? (Indeed, Recode reports the sign-in component of Plus may become its own separate product.)

There was also the argument that Google search would suffer if it didn’t have access to users’ social graphs as a data set. But even Facebook has yet to figure out how to turn social data into a worthwhile search product.

3. Building a bunch of independent products is a better approach than building one uber-product with a ton of different features. That’s what Facebook has concluded lately, anyway. After years of trying to do everything under the same umbrella, Mark Zuckerberg is now focused on “unbundling” Facebook’s offerings into a number of “ single-purpose, first-class experiences,” like Messenger, Paper, Instagram and WhatsApp.

Not only does the unbundled approach lower the threshold for potential new users to sign up, it just results in better products on their own terms. That’s what former Google+ team member Danny Crichton took away from the experience of working there:

One of the key lessons I learned from the experience that I have drilled into every founder I have worked with is that focus is absolutely everything. As soon as you have two goals, even one that is minor, you start heading toward the center of the convex set of solutions, and your product deeply suffers.

【原文链接】Google Will Be Better Off Minus Google+

 

 

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