Google is not happy that Facebook is rivaling it to become the top online property, so it's taking matters into its own hands by creating a Facebook killer, and it's starting with video games.
According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, Google is in active discussions with EA and Playfish to develop new casual, social games. Additionally, it is also talking with Playdom, which just became a top name in this space thanks to a Disney buyout, and of course Google is working on refining Facebook game giant Zynga, which it recently poured a lot of money into.
Google's current social network, if you can call it that, is "Buzz," which integrates into Gmail and other Google apps, but is largely disregarded by the hundreds of millions of people who use Google services every day.
Google CEO Eric Schmidt said that "the world doesn't need a copy of the same thing," so the online giant's approach to fighting Facebook is seemingly to chip it apart by pieces. The first step it's taking is in social games.
Google has shown an increasing interest in video games lately. For the anniversary of Pac-Man, it turned Google.com's landing page into a playable version of the classic arcade title. It has also embedded the old-school game Snake into YouTube, and there has been a stronger push to get more games onto Google's Android operating system.
For Google, it isn't about convincing people from Facebook to go to its side of the fence. Obviously, people connected to Facebook already know all about Google's products. "Facebook users use more Google products than any other users," said Schmidt.
Instead, Google needs to convince those users that it can provide more compelling experiences than what they're getting on Facebook, and it is a good first step to show people that it can continue to break ground by going full-force into the gaming scene, a still largely untapped market for Google.
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