Come the holiday, come the big news. As Steve predicted
can’t wait to see what the major surprise acquisition/hiring/firing/etc of this vacation is. there’s always at least one.
— steve o'grady (@sogrady) August 8, 2015
and we duly get the announcement of Alphabet, Googles new operating structure.
While the views on the change have been mixed, with the FT Lex column [paywalled] being more scathing than most, in general the move has been welcomed. The consensus is, rightly in my opinion, that separating the core Google business from other areas will help innovation.
Google is a large company, and no matter how fast you try to move, large companies develop bureaucracy and inertia. Freeing smaller units from the great bureaucracy, but still keeping them under the overall umbrella, will allow their teams to experiment and fail fast in relative safety.
But what does this mean for developers? For now it seems like very little. The companies core internet products and “related technical infrastructure” are all going to stay under the Google banner (see the Edgar filing) .We have already noted Google’s investment in Kubernetes, and expect this to continue. As we all know interest in AngularJS is off the charts. The one area we should see a doubling down on is Googles Machine Learning activities. The real battle in this space is only just commencing, and making machine learning accessible to the masses is the next frontier for a lot of infrastructure companies, Google included.
It is also hard to envision a scenario where the Nest developer program changes substantially from its current form. If anything it may provide some additional focus on growing their developer base.
By all accounts Sundar Pichai is a great leader, and very highly regarded by the engineering teams at Google. Having a CEO who is laser focused on your core product offerings can only be a good thing. We won’t see the financials until the Q4 earnings come out next year, and while Alphabet is not going to break things down into much detail beyond Google and all other areas, it will be interesting to see just how much of Alphabets revenue comes from core Google operations.
Disclosure: Google is not a current RedMonk client.