When Google appeared on the search engine market there was virtually nothing. People who were using HotBot were considered geek and into computers.
Search was a big business, for sure, but it wasn't like a whole slew of large search engine companies was out there.
Search was mostly an also done. You had a portal or a whole family of sites — and search. Don't really need search as you already offer what anyone would ever need, right? Anyway, let's slap it on there. Bam. Search. Thanks.
With a "there's nothing here but a searchbox" design, no portal, no sister sites, no ads (…) and just pretty good plain search results on plain white pages, Google soon became a hit and then the hit.
The Internet bloomed, the World Wide Web bloomed: Google bloomed.
Bloomed and boomed.
Everyone did. Unimagined growth. Even the sky was no limit. Ad prices spinning out of control. Until the dot-com bomb exploded and many were left empty handed.
In that empty space of Internet misery Google introduced not a premium advertisement service but a nickel and dime one: AdWords which would be published by Google itself and by cheap third parties via AdSense.
Today these make up the majority of the actual money Google makes.
Today Google wants to get into media delivery in a market filled with giants and it thinks to succeed there the way it did when it entered a market without competitors with a product that made no threat no anyone's ad revenue.
After failing to penetrate the video market with its own product, Google acquired YouTube for 1.65 billion dollar. Right after, Viacom, owner of CBS, MTV, Paramount Pictures, Dreamworks Studios and then some, said; welcome — here's a lawsuit for one billion dollar for copyright infringement.
Robert Murdoch (Fox, New York Post, MySpace and even then some more), NBC Universal, Microsoft (hello!), Yahoo!, AOL (need I say more) and MySpace again in response have joined up in a merry band to deliver video to an audience of more than a several hundred million.
Currently Google has plans or is moving actively into established multi-billion dollar markets such as print advertisement, radio ads, possible TV ads, mobile phones and others.
How well will Google really do in a competitive market with more billions facing them then they can put out?