Why Google Struggles With Hardware

Why Google Struggles With Hardware

Our mission is to bring a
more helpful Google for you. Google’s hardware business
is really confusing. It means creating
products like these. They’re like history, so confusing. You can almost like put
funny music to it. It considers companies like Samsung,
both a partner with services like Android and a competitor with
hardware like the Pixel 4. It has branded devices under Nexus, like
the Nexus One and Nexus Q, Chrome, like the Chromebooks and Chromecast,
Pixel, like the Pixel 4 and Pixelbook Go, Nest, like the Nest
Home Hub and Nest WiFi, and its own name, like the Google
Home and Google Glass. And only a few of these products
have gone on to take a successful share of their respective markets. Google’s a real hardware competitor
in some markets, especially when you think about education and
laptops with its Chromebooks. But in general, as a player against
Apple and Samsung and phones and other places, it’s not considered a
major player in this space. For a company with an
almost $900 billion market capitalization, Alphabet, Google’s parent company, just doesn’t
make a lot of that money from its hardware. But through acquisitions, partnerships,
internal design and developments, Google has stitched together
a product line that makes the company’s complete vision
hard to see. So if the company can’t rely on
hardware as a major source of income the same way Apple and Samsung
do, what is Google’s ultimate goal? The hardware’s true sort of value is
the fact that it helps Google collect information that can be used
for advertising and then to serve you ads anywhere
you might be. I don’t view Google as a hardware
contender because at its core it’s an advertising company. It’s easy to miss Google’s hardware
strategy in its current lineup. Google says it wants to create
products that can exemplify Google’s software and services like Android,
Chrome, Google Assistant and others. But let’s be very clear. Google is not a hardware company. Of its $38.94 billion revenue in quarter two
of 2019, only about 16 percent came from Google’s so-called
“other revenues” category, which includes Google’s hardware sales, Google
Play sales and cloud revenue. The vast majority
of that $38.94 billion income comes from
its ad business. Google captures 20 percent
of all U.S. ad dollars, both online and
offline, and a whopping 74.6 percent of all U.S. search ad dollars. The hardware business has to serve the
rest of the business, which is an advertising business. Where it’s collecting profiles, it’s
collecting data on you. Looking at its history, Google has tried
hard to clean up its product line, like Steve Jobs famously did when
he returned to Apple in the 90s. But it’s still
struggling in general. Google creates its hardware in
three ways: through partnerships, through acquisitions and through
its own in-house efforts. Google’s first big hardware partnerships
were thanks to its operating system, Android. When we talk about flagship best
Android devices, the Motorola Droid was really probably what put Android
on the map in the consumer’s mind. In fact, to this day when
people talk about Android, you still hear them refer to it as droids. It wasn’t the first Android phone, but
it was the first Android phone that got a tremendous amount of
attention and drove a tremendous amount of sales. But the Nexus line
of phones signified a change in the way Google looked at hardware. So the Nexus line was originally
developed, sort of showing what you can do with an Android phone
with the latest version of Android. It was for developers to build their
apps for the platform so that partners in the Open Handset Alliance
could then launch phones based on that. The Nexus One only sold
about 20,000 units in 2010 compared to Apple’s iPhone 3GS,
which sold 1.6 million units in the same year. The next hardware for Google to
tackle was the computer itself. Chromebooks used to be laptop-like
internet terminals that Google developed during its shift to
cloud-based computing and storage. Originally, these laptops just accessed
the internet via Google’s Chrome browser, nothing else. Everything was stored on Google’s
servers, even the applications. The hypothesis is that you were
always connected because at the time when they first came out, there
was very little storage on the device. You had to be connected
for it to do everything. The first Chromebooks were manufactured by
Samsung and Acer and got the products off to a rocky
start, leaving reviewers wondering why Google made these
glorified netbooks. But by 2016, Chromebooks were outselling
Macs, thanks in part to their popularity in schools. In fact, Chromebook took 60
percent of the U.S. educational market share by 2018. It was in 2012 that it really decided
to want to put a lot of money behind hardware. It acquired Motorola Mobility
for about $40 a share for $12.5 billion, marking a
huge investment in Google’s hardware strategy to build its own phones,
instead of partnering with other people to build its phones for it. In a blog post, then CEO Larry
Page said the combination would offer consumers accelerating innovation, greater
choice and wonderful user experiences. The biggest value that the company got
out of it was its patent portfolio so it can go
toe-to-toe with companies like Microsoft and Apple. Then in 2014, CEO Larry Page decided
they wanted to get out of the mobility business and ended up
selling Motorola Telenova for $2.9 billion, which was vastly less
than what they paid for. $9.5 billion less to be exact. I can only classify the Motorola
acquisition as a complete bust. One of Google’s most lucrative investments
was in the company Nest, which was originally acquired by
Google’s parent company, Alphabet. That was sort of the start into
this home hardware foray and at the time it was just
a smart thermostat. I mean, how many houses do you
walk into or apartments where the Nest is the featured element? With its eye still on the
hardware prize, Google announced in 2017 that it would spend $1.1 billion on a cooperation agreement
between itself and longtime partner HTC, a company that
previously developed several Nexus phones and even manufactured a
few Pixel models. I believe this was a reaction
to post, spinning off Motorola, realizing they didn’t have enough
of their own employees or contractors to do what they needed to
do, and they just they needed experienced bodies. Google acquired about 2,000 HTC employees,
many of whom worked on the Pixel team while at HTC,
and the acquisitions continued. In 2018, Google decided to absorb
Nest fully into its own lineup, making it no longer an
independent company under Alphabet. In 2019, Google closed a $40
million deal with watch group, Fossil, and most recently, Google
acquired Fitbit for $2.1 billion. For smaller, more niche
projects, Google turned inward, like with Google Glass, which
was a wearable device. Kind of goes down and is infamous
for not really making much of a breakthrough in the market like
the company had hoped. Glass was advertised as a pair
of augmented reality glasses that could provide users with turn-by-turn
directions, read messages and emails and take
pictures and videos. But the real-life functionality was much
more limited due to its small battery. I personally went out
and bought Google Glass and I was pretty sure at the time
it was going to revolutionize everything. The product was such a flop
that adopters of the glasses were referred to as “glassholes.” Google really didn’t understand the
personal ramifications they would have on its users. That was very negative. Google discontinued the product for consumers
in 2015, but they live on in the workplace. In 2016, it decided to reverse
course again and it made another aggressive stride into hardware. This gave way to incredibly successful
products like the Google Home, which was the most popular smart
speaker lineup in the United States in 2018. I think Google’s best
performing device is likely the Google Mini. And with this new Google-centric
frame of mind, the company nixed Nexus to create its very
own Pixel line of phones, Chromebooks and tablets. They’re not co-branded with
people like Huawei or LG. The Pixel phones have been critically
acclaimed, but pulled a dismal 2.25 percent of the smartphone market
in North America, less than Samsung, LG, Huawei and
even former subsidiary Motorola. I think when you see Google
Pixel commercials and see the YouTube videos with millions of views, you
might get the impression that this is a huge phone and has a
very vocal and dedicated fan base. But when you look at shipment
figures around the United States particularly, it’s not even among the
top five, although we’ve seen in past years that
the Pixel is growing. So besides products like the Google
Home Mini, now the Nest Home Mini, why would Google continue to
sell hardware that is failing to bring in big bucks?
The unspoken interaction or contract between the consumer and Google
is that I’m going to make these devices do amazing things, I’m
going to know things about you so it’s going to do things that I
know you wanted to do and then we’re allowed to advertise
back to you. Google knows a surprising
amount about you. Whether you’re using an Android phone or
just use a bunch of Google apps like Google Maps, Gmail, YouTube
and Chrome, Google has built a profile for you that includes
a lot of information. Google knows that I
don’t have kids. Google knows that I work for a
very large employer that has more than 10000 people. Google knows that I’m
a renter, not a buyer. It does know some details that
you probably know that you’ve never sort of explicitly told them, but
it’s inferred these things through all of your behaviors on Google. Google uses this profile to provide
you with more accurate search results and the like, but more
importantly, it uses that info to serve you targeted ads. Obviously, there’s these Google Homes,
there’s these smart home sensors and all of these things
are also collecting data on us. They also say that all of this
collection is to just make your experience with their
products easier. So they want to be really relevant. They want to be fast. They want
to know that when you’re talking to your home device that you want things
that are in your town or if you’re asking for, you know, a pair
of shoes that they’re going to give it to you and your size. And Google isn’t shy about the information
it collects or how it uses it. Just check out Google’s
privacy and terms page. It has a video
explaining all of this. So it’s very easy to find all
of this information and see what they have available about you. And it’s very easy to opt out. There’s a little button that says,
“turn off my ad targeting.” It’s very easy to do that. It’s a little less easy to
understand from a third-party player perspective what information they have
collected that has now gone out to these third party players. The network is
probably extraordinary. Now when it comes to software,
there are few that rival Google. Android holds a huge majority of
the smartphone market worldwide, and Chrome OS currently powers more than
half of the mobile computers in U.S. schools. When you look at phones, Android’s
the real winner here, not necessarily Google Pixel. When you look at laptops, it’s
Chrome OS made by Google’s partners, not necessarily
Google’s Pixelbooks. But when it comes to putting that
software in every nook and cranny of your life through hardware, it
gets a bit worrisome for consumers. It still has issues that
it has to overcome. It has to convince consumers that
it’s actually serious about making technology and being in
the hardware space. It also has to convince consumers that
they can trust them with being in the most personal areas of
their lives and having hardware that will protect the user’s
privacy and security. It’s hard to say exactly what
the future will be for Google’s hardware business. But one thing is
for sure: if you’re using a Google product, you are helping
Google sell you better ads.

100 thoughts on “Why Google Struggles With Hardware

  1. Why need that movement sensing tech to switch pictures? Madness! Waste of battery power and resources for chips. Use fingers… Simple. Earth has limited resources, we will be in a massive problem in next 20-40 years for energy and resources!

  2. Google hardware is made up of wannabes that want to be flashy to the public without actually knowing anything about high quality hardware designs, neither putting themselves into the customer’s experience. That is why their products are half baked and the quality is just not there. Including their software. If you think your money is worth an experiment for Google buy their products otherwise, not worth what they want to charge you. They should pay the users to use their products.

  3. I have solved the JonBenet Patricia Ramsey case, Diana's crash and 9-11 espionage October of our year 1996. Accurate military grade numerology its piracy all three crimes originated from 'Nettwerk One Ltd.,' Medias. Donald became a obstacle to their speech our year 1988. I am '@itcanbeseen' that 'Whistle-blower' on Twitter, https://www.twitter.com/itcanbeseen, Adam Schiff campaigns to omit my literature today over my past communication with Adam Schiff over the 1992 Los Angeles, California riots origin secreted Henry Rollins participated in campaigning criminal code a 1990's music industry utilized as a catalyst behind the riots' childhood subject purged onto television over Timken Research frequency optical sensory illegal surveillance of my childhood, monetized a Mossad orchestrated a second atonement, I prepared each month I have is audibly archived on https://www.huetonemediae.com. Keep my Autism sacred, keep me from off the streets and keep my testimony alive!

  4. Pixel 4 is a 💯 complete desaster. In short words: big bezels, ugly Design, dim display, small battery, small base storage, no SD 855+, no UFS 3.0, no front facin speakers, no 4k60fps at rear, no 4k at front, no wide angle cam, limited 90 Hz, small RAM, Very bad RAM management, useless motion sense, insecure face ID, Very very very bad build quality, cracking hardware, no earphones INda box, no free cloud storage, high price.

  5. So according to this video Google collects my data when I use google apps on my OnePlus phone or my Huawei laptop and that is why they build their own hardware… What?
    Video should've been called "Google makes money by collecting your data". but i guess that we already know

  6. Can confirm google spys on you even if you Google Pixel is on sleep, my friend would talk about Inital D when I'm with him and I would then receive Advertisements pertaining to said topic within 10min of talking about it.

  7. Google should drop Chromebooks. The only people who get Chromebooks are teenagers who got them as a gift from their grandparents who thought it was a normal laptop. No one who has a Chromebook is happy about it. It's definitely a stain on google's hardware business.

  8. I won't buy any Google hardware because they can't be trusted. Think about people on YouTube that had their entire Google accounts banned for something on YouTube. Now imagine Google leveraging their hardware in situations like this. No thanks. Google definitely does too much evil for my taste.

  9. My grandfather has a chromebook, my father got it for free when they were still just netbooks. He still uses that damn thing today.

  10. 6:50 I’m wondering whether these are the actual factory workers, because they are Caucasian and look more like models… Those phones would be so expensive

  11. The Pixel series of phones could be better. Google can either learn from their mistakes, enlist the aid from other companies, or stick to software. In an ever-competitive market for the latest tech, cross-shopping Samsung and Google for phones seems like a no brainer because Google undercuts Samsung. Then OnePlus comes along and all of a sudden, Google is overpriced.

  12. Google isn't taking their phones serious, that's all. We, Android community, literally tell Google what we want on a phone and they give us something else. I still use Google products cause it already knows me. We live in the internet age and there's no point in running away or trying to delete everything you do. I don't mind them making money off of me just to give me better advertisements because I actually find them useful in things I want to try out and buy. I know it sounds bad or like I'm brainwashed but, I really would rather get ads that I can relate to instead of ads about back pain, medical pills, or gold coins…

  13. The finish or features of their products are nowhere near that of an apple and samsung but the price is.
    Problem explained,End of the story.

  14. The hardware collection they have today is nothing compared to where it will be in 2030. Just one more decade to decade hardware cycle roll out as oppose to their dominance in decade to decade software cycles, and it will make more sense to everyone.

  15. Microsoft and Apple also do hardware, Amazon tries, too. If you want to rely on third parties to build hardware for your platform, competing against them would not be so good, but setting an example would be. So, high quality, high price would make sense, but not direct money. The early Pixel Chromebook was certainly that.

  16. Lots of legal issues here. We never consented and the acceptance the legality of any EULA is questionable. In effect these agreements are worded where you have no rights and they have all. In addition, no ads can be served to anyone without the explicit agreement in writing between both parties, and all terms and conditions must be viewable BEFORE a single ad is served – no contract no ads.

    A magistrate from a court in Munich, Germany was dealing with Axel Springer vs Eyeo GmbH (maker of AdBlock Plus) and stated "The Süddeutsche Zeitung ruling came through in a Munich court. The judge said it is perfectly legal for people to install ad-blockers in their browsers as publishers have no contracts with their readers that insist they have to look at the ads."

    The ‘implied contract’ theory that we’ve agreed to view ads in exchange for free content is void because we can’t review the terms first — as soon as we follow a link, our browsers load, execute, transfer, and track everything embedded by the publisher. Our data, battery life, time, and privacy are taken by a blank check with no recourse.” Every time you visit a website with an ad, it's an implied contract, but since you cannot view all the terms it's void and cannot be enforced. However under contract law, the only valid contracts are those signed in ink and both parties. Something you cannot do online, and these "bluff statements" like "by continuing to use this site you agree or our terms and conditions" are not legal either.

    Oh BTW another 559 ads blocked during the writing of this comment.

  17. Despite the struggles I've had mostly good experiences with Google's hardware. Battery and price aside (and I personally have no problems with my battery life) but the Pixel 4 is a fantastic piece of hardware. Both of my Chromecast work as advertised and have been a fantastic addition to my home. The Google Home mini is also a nice touch.

  18. Google fail because we now know what they really want. Your info which is like blood for google without blood wer knows what can happen☺☺💣

  19. They also have crappy support. I have been without a phone for two days because my 3 xl stopped working. Google first referred me to my carrier who referred me back to google. After all that, they said they decide they will warranty replace it, but I had to send the phone in first then wait until they send my one back. When my note 8 stopped working, Samsung sent me to a repair partner who repaired the phone on the spot, covered by warranty. People I know who have apple phones got a replacement phone with a return package to return the device.

  20. Their products are very expensive don't have a fan following who will pay that much money
    They are not available anywhere and more
    If they make products like Moto G they will be successful again

  21. Android is the worst OS a phone could have. With powerful hardwares underlying, android is restricting the user, the experience the powerful hardware is slated to provide

  22. It's a search engine at the core. So it's source of revenue is ONLINE advertising.

    Android comes with Google's services included. All phone companies outsourcing Android OS needs to include Google's apps.

    Hardware companies are also phone companies called OEM. Hardware is peripheral to Google's expansion that is to expand its SEARCH ENGINE on your phones. You click on an Ad on your phone, the adviser and Google get their cut.

  23. Google needs to stick to what it does best. Software. All of their software is very snappy and fluid. However, their hardware isn't up to par with samsung and apple. Google needs to play its cards right and just sell the privilege of using their stuff to apple and samsung so they can make more money. Googles software is extremely fluid on iOS and android. They don't need to make their own hardware. Its just a stupid business decision.

  24. I bought my first Google product which was pixel 3 xl last month. I dropped it once and left a dent on my white paint and chiped off after. Seemed over complicated when I first used it. It also slowed down after a month. I promised myself to never buy any pixel products.

  25. It's simple, they are not a hardware company. When your priorities are data and marketing then you're not gonna be making great hardware. When you spend $899 on a Pixel 4 phone and you get just a vanilla Android experience. It's not exactly a great seller for the price. There's too much competition within Android from OnePlus, Samsung, Huawei, etc.

  26. Google is a major hardware player in education?
    No, Chromebooks are, the cheapest Chromebook from Google is around 600 USD from the official store (I'm not sure about Amazon) and at that price, they can't compete with anything

  27. we can't imagine our lives without Google so let us also contribute to make Google survive and make our lives more easier.

  28. Well i am a pixel user and am happy for one good reason.
    Google products are cheaper than apple products . Pixel phones do get some killer features which have no match like …..now playing , unlimited cloud storage, killer camera , etc
    As far as the ad part is concerned Google is earning some 32 billion because of the ads and not hardware .it's practically impossible to live without using YouTube , Maps or Google search for a day . If it's ads vs Google services, it's Google for me on any day.

  29. If they can somehow give their Google Assistant the ability to use logic and reasoning, I would use it no matter how much data Google knows about me.

  30. I keep my phones longer than most and I have yet to find another android phone with the same longevity as pixels. I'm still using the 2xl and it's working better than when I got it. I've never had that with Samsung or lg. Because of that, they're just a better value for me.

  31. They are creepy that is why. Who in their right mind would allow such an intrusive company into their private lives? 1984 was not an instruction manual.

  32. Google should not be in the pixel businesses. The pixel struggled in hardware… Like burn in or screen won't turn off when call ends

  33. I think the Google can become a big hardware player on strength of their software prowess. I use the Pixel 3a, and it is a fantastic device. It's not SUPER fast, but still runs smoothly enough, the camera is A+ and even though it uses plastic, it feels quite premium in its material. They do need to work harder on getting some of the basics right with their top-line phones but I feel that will happen in the next 2-3 years.

  34. This software giant doesn't come out any hardware that looks as good as Apple or even Microsoft did. I like Android but dislike pixel phone…

  35. google is on to some thing for temporary basis thy needed hardware business thy r into more AI and cloud and apps but to feed these areas with cash thy use add mny

  36. They're a software company, jumping into the hardware business. Just like Microsoft did when they finally released Surface. There's no need for a video like this…

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