The internet has been abuzz ever since Kevin Rose drunkenly tweeted that Google was launching a Facebook competitor and was going to call it Google Me, though still no confirmation from Google, but that’s not really very surprising.
My knee-jerk reaction to this “announcement” was something along the lines of “WTH, Google?!”. Have they so quickly forgotten just how successful their Twitter killer, Google Buzz was? Seriously, hasn’t Google already made enough failed attempts at social networking? Let’s review… Orkut (fail), Google Profiles (meh), the afore mentioned Google Buzz (eh), and to a degree Google Wave (blah). Name one of those products that’s successful by any stretch of the imagination. And no, just because Leo Laporte uses Buzz does not make it successful.
Currently Google does one thing well in the social scene, and that’s aggregate your social content. For example, Social Circle (beta) is a nice feature added to the results page which displays your friends tweets and blog posts that might be related to your search, they also have fairly robust support for importing your content from various sources into Buzz, though that’s still not enough to get me to actually use Buzz.
There’s also some speculation that Google Me will just be a more robust version of Google Profiles, building off the existing profiles that users have setup and expanding their functionality, which would make sense. But at that point why bother renaming it. And would really compete with Facebook?
Bottom line here, I agree Facebook needs to die and Google might seem to be the best company for the job, but I don’t think given their track record of late that they’ll be able to pull it off.