There is no doubt that Google has trust issues with users of Google Apps, but is that an issue that should be exploited by Microsoft?
The TechRepublic Google in the Enterprise Blog has been around for almost a year now and there is one common theme I have seen expressed time and time again - many IT professionals do not trust Google.
This lack of trust is related to two specific issues:
- The lack of privacy in the form of gathered user data, and
- The continuous changes made to available features in Google Apps
The first issue is the more difficult because there is really no solution. Google is a gatherer of user information - some would say that is their primary business. The company uses this information to make the advertising they sell more effective and therefore more valuable. I don't see this ever changing - it is how Google generates revenue.
The second issue does have a solution, but not one Google seems willing to accept. Users and the businesses they work for cannot afford to have their office productivity tools change day-to-day or even week-to-week. Adding features there and removing features here just causes confusion and slows down productivity. Many of these changes occur without warning and, more frustratingly, without any sense of purpose or direction.
These issues of trust have not gone unnoticed by the likes of Microsoft and its nearly ubiquitous Office Suite. Justin James shared a link to the video below and it struck me as mildly amusing and closer to the truth than Google would like to admit.
Microsoft's record with these little videos are hit and miss, but how would you classify this one for truthfulness? Should Google be listening and looking to repair their reputation or is the video a case of the pot calling the kettle black?