Google Is Not Just Building an Ecosystem, It's Building an Empire
Of course, the visionaries, engineers and architects at various levels of Google haven't been taken by surprise. I erred by discounting Google while TheStreet's Anton Wahlman was busy putting the pieces together.
Apple (AAPL) to $1,000 and beyond predictions didn't pan out. But that doesn't mean GOOG will not reach that level. In fact, $1,000 might be a conservative target for this stock.
Think about what's happening here. Google built out this massive core business that not only continues to grow, but will lead the mobile advertising revolution. All the while, people (like me) criticized Google for doing a whole bunch of other stuff that failed to produce meaningful direct revenue. We (I) missed the point; advertising, at 98% to 99% of total revenue, subsidized these other ventures.
Now, as I discussed last week, Google's about to bust out:
Across the board, Google platforms continue to get better. They're nailing it with just about everything. We all know about its superior maps application, but, look out, here comes everything from Google Plus to Google Now to its cloud and entertainment-related pushes. YouTube is about to bust out for real. It's all coming together -- a seamless integration like we've never seen before.
So, the question then: How does Google squeeze revenue out of this proper mess?
It's already getting us hooked on its services. That's been a gradual, but amazingly effective process. Gmail. Chrome. Google Maps. We're hooked. Expect this dynamic to repeat itself with everything from entertainment platforms to productivity suites.
Look out Microsoft (MSFT) .
Do you really think it will be a tough sell for Google to go to likeminded technology and Internet companies and sell them on ditching Windows and Office for Android and Google's suite of services? Shooting fish in a barrel, baby. And, of course, as is usually the case, old guard stragglers will follow the lead of the early adopters. With Apple seemingly uninterested in making iWorks a true player, Google will knock Microsoft from its perch in a straight line.
This leads to an enterprise market for Google hardware. And it coincides with a retail presence that gets Chromebooks and "Nexi" -- as well as Google Glasses -- into the hands of consumers.
$1,000 GOOG looks like 2013's featured appetizer.
--Written by Rocco Pendola in Santa Monica, Calif.