Earlier this week, Larry Page officially assumed command of the company he helped to found more than a decade ago.
Long-time chief executive Eric Schmidt agreed to step down after it was decided that the "kids" were ready to take over in Mountain View. While Page is no stranger to the workings of Silicon Valley and the larger business world, Google's road is still fraught with perils.
This week, we're taking a look at some of the challenges that face Page and how he can perhaps avoid them as he looks to bring Google into the new decade and beyond.
Honourable Mention: Make nice with Apple
Shaun Nichols: It wasn't too long ago that Apple and Google were the best of friends. Eric Schmidt sat on Apple's board and in many ways you could see parallels in how both companies did business.
Recently, that changed. Google entered the smartphone business with Android and Schmidt left Apple's board soon after amid rumours of a falling out of sorts with Apple.
Perhaps this was simply a case of each company simply getting too big and outgrowing itheir relationship with one another. Certainly you don't want the head of your biggest competitor presiding over your business plans.
But that doesn't mean Page can't keep some degree of friendship with Apple, particularly on a professional level. The smartphone market has plenty of room for Android and iOS to thrive, and the two companies have very strong software offerings that could help the other's platforms.
Iain Thomson: Oh Shaun - you're failing as a journalist. As hacks, we don't want them to make up, we want a nice juicy war, so we should be advising Page to play hardball and release the dogs of ditto.
But objectively you are right. There's no good reason to get into a pissing match with Apple and plenty of reasons not to. Apple is one of the few companies in the technology industry that has more resources than Google. Apple is also a company known for harbouring grudges for a very long time and, even if Steve Jobs is on the sidelines, this looks unlikely to change.
Apple and Google are only really going head to head over Android, but to be frank Apple has its hands full dominating the headlines with tablets and smartphones. It knows it can outsell Android for the moment in the former case and scoop the richest and most credulous customers with the latter.
Honourable Mention: Stop the PR wars
Iain Thomson: Google is pretty good at PR, but lately the company has seemed far more interested in spoilers and stunts.
Take the Farsight search conference in February, for example. On the morning of Microsoft's keynote Google just happens to uncover evidence which seems to suggest that Bing is copying its search results from Google. Harry Shum, corporate vice president of search at Microsoft, was essentially ambushed on stage, and spent a very uncomfortable Q&A next to a very smug Googler.
What did this accomplish? Very little as it turns out. The copying, or not, is in question but analysts suggest it's hardly the big issue Google is making out. Someone at Microsoft's day got spoiled, Google grabbed a few headlines and nothing much changed - except people noticed and tongues started to wag.
These kind of PR tactics are as old as the hills, and journalists enjoy them up to a point. But they are also the sign of a PR department with too much time on its hands and can make companies lose focus. If you're putting man hours into pointless showpieces it's a sign of misplaced priorities.
Shaun Nichols: On one hand, watching huge companies behave like small children makes for great press. But it is more than a little bit worrisome for employees and investors when their company takes cheap shots at competitors.
While the public may get a kick out of feuds, such as the current Oracle/HP tiff, those who hold a financial stake can't help but cringe. That time spent accusing the other guy of wrongdoing would be better spent developing and marketing new products.
Google is still a relatively young company, particularly when compared to other large technology companies such as IBM, Microsoft and Apple. When it engages in a public war of words, the first thing people think is: 'Those immature Google kids are at it again.'
Taking the high road, at least when it comes to public comments, would serve Page well.
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