By scrutinizing the traffic Google searches produce, Internet analysis firm Hitwise in January predicted that Google might launch a virtual world. Lo and behold, Google launched Lively on Tuesday. So what's next?
Google Autos or Google Music are the guesses that Hitwise hazarded Wednesday. "Our thinking was that Google might want to fill natural gaps in its portfolio of offerings based on the interests of its users. We looked at which categories are receiving the most traffic from Google in which Google does not have its own property," Hitwise's Heather Hopkins wrote in a blog post.
In the top 20 classes of Internet sites toward which Google sent traffic, only three have no corresponding in-house Google project, according to Hitwise's June 2008 research.
"The data suggests Google Autos and Google Music," Hopkins said. "I am not sure we'll see Google Government just yet!"