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Deconstructing Google vs PayPal

Analysts are looking askance at Google's plans for an electronic payment system, ranging from speculation that Google is looking at adding classified ads to its mix to an admission of a slowdown in its core advertising business.

In the beverage business, business is measured by occasions. For example, how many times do you consume Coke? At dinner? At lunch? On the drive home? Minute Maid for breakfast? PowerAde when you're working out? Coke has built its business on being wherever you are with an option that matches the mood and moment.

Google appears to be thinking the same way, especially with their plans for Google Print and Google Video. With these projects, Google has an opportunity to be there, in one way or another, every time someone watches a video or reads a document. To make this happen, their stated goal - of helping publishers sell more product - is currently hampered by the sheer complexity of fulfillment. An e-wallet is a requirement of an end-to-end solution for publishers.

At the end of the day, I think Google realizes classified ads are a much smaller business than content digital rights management.


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