Since Google accounts for more than 63% of all Internet searches, it’s no wonder that Google’s stock fell last week when Google users had significant problems when Google’s servers were overloaded and Google services were operating at a crawl. Google claims that there were problems in 3 of their Asian data centers (out more than 30 data centers worldwide) which affected about 14% of Google’s users. Many Internet users rely on Google for services beyond searches, including gmail, Google Apps, and Google Latitude to name a few. Google’s server failures meant many users could not conduct business during this outage period.
Protecting Privacy Google
A recent article in Computerworld gives Google users 6 tips about protecting privacy:
1. Know your privacy rights: Use the Google Privacy Center.
2. Protect your content on the services you use.
3. Turn off the suggestion feature in the Chrome browser.
4. Turn off Web History.
5. Opt out of interest-based ad serving.
6. Add SSL to Gmail.
However, since most Internet users do not take the time to review privacy policies it’s unlikely that this advice will be heeded by many Google users.
Google announced a number of new services for desktops and mobile phones which includes search capabilities in multiple contexts so that when searching from a cell phone, Google will take into account the GPS location and what other mobile users have searched in that locale. Also Google will offer a new tweak to search on Search Options that allows a user to drill by topics, time, or images. About to make its debut is a much hyped search engine known as Wolfram Alpha.
Google Too Successful?
A big question may now be has Google been too successful? As Google offers these new features to sell ever more ads space, surely Google hopes to draw more users. Without question the recent system slow-down is an ominous sign of potential bad news on the horizon. No doubt Google’s search engine competitors like Yahoo!, Microsoft, and AOL are watching with great interest to see if they can capture Google users who may abandon Google if the system outages become a pattern.