Things We Learned From Google’s Analyst Day

Plenty of press coverage (even though the press wasn’t invited to attend in person) of Google’s first Analyst Day. Among things discussed? Google cofounder Larry Page seeing no problem with beta going for five years, Google denying again browser plans, a worker shortage slowing plans to expand mobile search, growth of a Google that “knows more about you” and eyebrows raised over an event where when the CFO spoke, it was the chief food officer rather than the chief financial officer. A webcast of the event (with slides) is available online. Here’s a look at some of the press coverage.

Google details strategy for analysts

San Jose Mercury News

+ On the “so many betas” issue that Danny recently discussed:

Larry Page said, “The engineers generally like to have beta on there when they are about to make major changes and improvements,” Page said. “If it’s on there for five years because they are going to make major changes for five years, that’s fine.”

+ On Google’s future plans:

Schmidt said Google will be focused more on international content and services, making its services more personal to users and available on more devices, and developing a “much deeper” advertising network.

Google’s big day unusuall
San Francisco Chronicle

On being an uncoventional company:

“One of the great secrets of Google is that we are not quite as unconventional as we say we are,” Schmidt said.

A Door Prize For Analysts?

The company did court analysts by offering one of them a free scooter in a drawing. However, many investment companies prohibit analysts from accepting such gifts from firms they cover because of the potential conflict of interest. A Google spokesman did not know who had won.

For first time, analysts get inside glimpse of Google
AP (via Seattle Times)

On Hiring Issues

Google co-founder Sergey Brin said the company would like to hire employees at a more rapid rate but has trouble finding enough applicants that meet its high standards.

On the Neverending Google Rumor Mill

Page downplayed recent media reports that the company is preparing to branch into new directions by introducing a Web browser, a service for registering Web domains and telephone service over the Internet. “Most of the things we read are a surprise to us,” Page told analysts.

Google’s Missing Piece
Washington Post

Hiring Problems A Reason for Few Mobile Services

Brin said the company’s inability to recruit more top-tier computer scientists and engineers abroad is slowing its plans to make Google available to users of cell phones and other portable devices.

Page Works on Google Maps

Page said he spent time with an engineering team to make GoogleMaps more readable, searchable and useful prior to its release.

We Need to Improve

“We know we should improve all of our products, which tends to be true for software generally,” Page said.

On Profiting from Every Service Google Offers

“We will eventually make money from Google News,” Page said, “but we don’t want to make money from all the things we have.”

Google’s Chef Speaks, but Not Its Finance Officer
New York Times

Worries for Privacy Advocates?

“We are moving to a Google that knows more about you.” — Eric Schmidt

Unusual analysts day?

“They had a formal presentation by their chef but not their chief financial officer,” said Mark S. Mahaney, an analyst with American Technology Research. “I have never been to an investor day where the C.F.O. didn’t speak.”

It’s the Food, CFO Doesn’t Speak But Chef Does

“…Google’s top chef, Charlie Ayers, spoke to the assembled analysts and investors about the lunch he had prepared, featuring entrees like grilled pork tenderloin.”

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