Google denies building “just another” Facebook
Internet search giant Google has claimed it is not building a social network to compete with Facebook, despite rumours to the contrary.
“We’re not working on a social-network platform that’s just going to be another social network platform,” said Google’s head of mobile product development, Hugo Barra.
“We do think that social is an ingredient for success for any app going forward, search and advertising being probably the best two examples that I would mention. So that’s how we’re thinking about the problem.”
Google chief executive Eric Schmidt said in September that the company intended to add “layers” of social networking to its sites, rather than unveil a flashy product, but his remarks failed to quash speculation about a Google social network.
Google owns the social network Orkut, which is popular in Brazil and India, but has failed to expand significantly beyond those markets.
This week, Google internally announced plans to boost salaries by 10% in a move widely seen as an effort to stop stop a stream of engineers and managers leaving Google for faster-growing rivals like Facebook.
Google also said recently it planned to block Facebook and other web services from accessing its users’ information, accusing Facebook of failing to reciprocate.
Facebook, on the other hand, is rumoured to be prepping an advanced messaging system that would rival Google’s Gmail service.
The company has sent out media invites to a San Francisco event next Monday, with prominent “inbox” logos, suggesting Facebook could finally be ready to upgrade the messaging system that currently operates within the social network.