April 17, 2007 1:34 PM PDT

Google treads on PowerPoint turf

SAN FRANCISCO--Google is adding a feature to its Docs & Spreadsheets Web-hosted software that will enable people to create presentations and slide shows, Google Chief Executive Eric Schmidt said Tuesday at the Web 2.0 Expo here.

Schmidt gave a short presentation made using the new feature, which he said would be launched soon. He offered no specific timeframe.

"It's a way of doing presentations," he said in a keynote address. "Collaboration is a killer app for how communities work."

Asked by conference program chair John Battelle if Google's enhanced Docs & Spreadsheets would compete with Microsoft Office, Schmidt said, "We don't think so. It doesn't have all the functionality, nor is it intended to have the functionality of products like Microsoft Office."

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Video: Schmidt talks DoubleClick deal
At the Web 2.0 Expo conference in San Francisco, Google CEO Eric Schmidt discusses the recent deal to buy advertising company DoubleClick.

Rumors of a Google "PowerPoint killer" have been circulating for months.

Google has been releasing more and more productivity applications as free, online services, starting with Gmail in 2004. Last year, Google merged its Documents and Spreadsheets products. Despite Google executives' claims that the company is not competing with Microsoft, industry insiders, including Battelle, say that by offering free online versions of fee-based Microsoft desktop software, Google is targeting Microsoft's cash cow. And Microsoft's response--Windows Live--has not exactly paid off.

"Come on! It's a competitor to Microsoft Office," Battelle said, prompting a round of applause from a concurring audience. "This provides (people) with a free alternative, which has got to be considered a threat" to Microsoft.

Battelle, who is an author and blogger, also asked Schmidt about Google's proposed $3.1 billion acquisition of online display ad company DoubleClick announced on Friday. Google co-founder Sergey Brin used to deride DoubleClick ads as "gaudy" and not targeted and asserted that Google would never offer "punch-the-monkey"-type ads, Battelle said. "What's changed in three years?" he asked Schmidt.

"DoubleClick has changed," Schmidt said. Their ads now are more targeted and they have better tools for advertisers and publishers, he added.

Battelle had other questions related to the merger: will Google spin out DoubleClick's Performics unit, which focuses on search optimization? The answer: "we don't know yet." And what does Google plan to do with the third-party application created for the Google Pack software suite that deletes DoubleClick cookies? "We actually think it's a pretty good application so we'll figure it out," Schmidt said.

Asked to comment on calls by Microsoft and AT&T for regulators to scrutinize the Google-DoubleClick merger for antitrust issues, Schmidt said, "They're wrong...It's false...Advertising is about a trillion dollar business and this is 1 percent of that."

Asked about the Viacom lawsuit from March alleging Google's YouTube hosts pirated material, Schmidt said Google complied with the copyrighted content take-down orders. "We fully complied with the law," he said.

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Eric Schmidt, DoubleClick Inc., advertising company, Google Inc., Web 2.0

9 comments

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Powerpoint competition? SIGN ME UP!
The presentation software market used to be very innovative and
competitive, until Microsoft bundled Powerpoint, or subsidized it in
Office give aways to hardware vendors.

Lookng at classrooms and business offices you'd think that
Microsoft invented the slideshow presentation market. THEY
DIDN'T, they arrested it!
Posted by technewsjunkie (1265 comments )
Reply Link Flag
yeah baby
on line, collaborative, shareable, light weight, browser based ...Its sdjectives like these that are getting me hot already. Whereas MS goes off into the presentation foundation morass. Of course printing it out will look lik e crap, but...

Why didnty I buy some google stock? WHy Why?
Posted by gggg sssss (2285 comments )
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PowerPoint Competition? Cardboard and Crayons!
If there is one emetogenic application in Office, it's PowerPoint. It's not only vile but unstable and much less easy to use than squares of cardboard and crayons - and not nearly as nice looking.

Now, all Google needs to do is give users a piece of the action for letting Google run keyword ads on presentations and force Microsoft to pay people to use PPT just to keep up.

Next, Mr Schmidt needs to bounce all searches coming in using Internet Explorer and hand back links to download Mozilla.

Baller could throw chairs at every customer and every competitor for five years and still wouldn't be able to match Google's play in the desktop applications market.
Posted by Sumatra-Bosch (526 comments )
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OOo anyone?
if google really wanted to kill MS office, they would just pour their resources into Open Office project, and get out there to really promote it. Either that or create something like it.
Posted by torrent478 (1 comment )
Reply Link Flag
I agree with the OpenOffice comment
The comment on OpenOffice makes total sense. I use both Office 2003 and OpenOffice and I can attest that the latest version 2.2 is almost 100% compatible with all the Office packages.

Furthermore, once I installed Office 2007 (NOT my recommendation) I am using OpenOffice my frequently, since it has 99% of the same commands and buttons as Office 2003. Office 2007 is just too many clicks for me.

Jesse The Mind Ventura
Posted by JesseThe (16 comments )
Link Flag
free office suite OpenOffice
OpenOffice.org is a multiplatform and multilingual office suite and an open-source project. Compatible with all other major office suites, (you can open and save as microsoft word documents for word, excel and powerpoint) the product is free to download, use, and distribute.

If you are business or individual needing a supported product Sun Microsystems sells a similar product (it is what openoffice originated from) <a class="jive-link-external" href="http://sun.com/staroffice/" target="_newWindow">http://sun.com/staroffice/</a> $70 USD E
nterprise Edition for Organizations (5-10,000+ licenses) Starting at: $35 per RTU license

<a class="jive-link-external" href="http://www.sun.com/software/star/staroffice/faqs/general.jsp" target="_newWindow">http://www.sun.com/software/star/staroffice/faqs/general.jsp</a>

KieranMullen (I didnt write most of the above)
Posted by kieranmullen (1070 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Only Half Agree
I agree that OO is a great replacement for MS Office today. But I think OO needs to pour it;s development effort into making the application available as a web service. We need to keep moving forward and personal operating systems and fat applications are not forward thinking.

We should access everything over the network (like we do TV and phone now). Want to give a presentation for to mypresentation.whatever and give your presentation. Want to share your pictures it is done automatically. Forget memory cards just snap away and the picture is sent to your on-line album. The upside is all your data can be backed up in a safe and secure manner when it is on the network. And you always have access to everything.
Posted by fitzgm3 (9 comments )
Reply Link Flag
Back to reality
Wireless is not everywhere... Internet is not everywhere, and where it does exist it doesnt cover 100%. People need offline services. Online is not the end all solution.
Posted by kieranmullen (1070 comments )
Link Flag
Google will be king within next 5 years I predict
I think Google is going to rule the world one day!
Posted by pentium4forever (192 comments )
Reply Link Flag
 

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