Google CEO Discusses China and More
Eric Schmidt, who is the CEO of Google, Inc., appears to be much more concerned in being able to keep the peace with China than trying to keep with rivals, especially that of Apple Inc., within the swiftly rising smartphone market.
If that isn’t the case it’s at least the way that it sounded the past Thursday when Google had their annual shareholder meeting. Schmidt had talked about diplomatic restraint while he was discussing their tenuous position and relationship with China. He was far less prudent when he was discussing the vastly intensifying battle that Google is waging with Apple in the mobile marketplace.
Google has had a sparring match with the leadership in China for over two months before finding a way to be able to stop their search results censorship in the country without having to abandon one of the key internet markets. Since late March of this year Google has started to redirect some of the search requests that come from mainland China over to Hong Kong. The reason for that is that Hong Kong doesn’t fall under some of the same governed restrictions as other parts of China.
It goes without saying that this had investors extremely worried that it would begin to stagger the remaining business that Google has in China. Schmidt stated though that the state of affairs “seems to be stable”. Schmidt did caution though that the situation could change very quickly if the Chinese government becomes more antagonistic.
In some remarks made earlier Schmidt had taken some jabs at Apple as well as some additional phone makers which basically took shots at how parsimonious their control is over their devices.
Although while boasting about the gains that Google has made recently within the mobile market he still stressed that the company is very eager to work with all of the device manufacturers and the software developers that want to make use of the Android OS. The open attitude that Google is showing is a complete inverse to that of the rest of the competition. It’s really a case of if they say “no”, we say “yes”.
Apple more than others has recently come under a lot of criticism for their requiring of software developers to use their tools for programming and creating applications for their popular iPhone and the growing iPad. This is made even more apparent by the fact that United States regulators are planning to examine whether or not the restrictions from Apple do or don’t violate antitrust laws.
The tensions continue to rise and don’t show any chance of slowing down as both Google and Apple are competing to sell their mobile devices, advertising and services. The relationship was in the past a cordial one but the duel has destroyed that. Schmidt formerly had a seat on the board of directors for Apple but ended up resigning last year as it became more present that the two companies were on a major collision course.
Even though there are more consumers with iPhones the Android devices are doing a good job at playing catch-up. Android took 28% of all of the smartphones shipped in the United States in Q1 of this year. They only trailed the RIM Blackberry by 2% with Blackberry taking 36% of the total shipped smartphones. The iPhone came in third taking 21%. These statistics are from the NPD research group.
It’s fair to say that shareholders had little to nothing to gripe about at the meeting due to the fact that the earnings Google has brought in have been rising even through the recession. Google’s stock price has been climbing by leaps and bounds since last year’s meetings by 30%.
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