Schmidt: Search remains Google's top focus

Search will continue to be the long-term focus at Google, CEO Eric Schmidt said Wednesday.

Search will continue to be the primary long-term focus at Google, even as the company builds a range of services to give Internet users better ways to find and distribute information, Chief Executive Officer Eric Schmidt said Wednesday.

"It's important right now to let people know we have more people working on search than ever before," Schmidt said. "It remains the core and focus of our business and likely will be so for the next 50 years."

Like competitor Microsoft, Google is viewed as relying on its dominance in one market -- revenues from its hugely popular search engine -- to pour resources into developing and offering many connected products and services.

Schmidt acknowledged as much on Wednesday while speaking to reporters at Google's California, campus. He said search will be the linchpin for all of the services Google expects to release in the long term, as the company continues to work on algorithms to make search easier, more efficient and personal for users.

"The way our model works is to build a great search and integrate all the other experiences around it," Schmidt said. "That seems to be what users want."

Users will influence the company's future services.

"End users are driving this and they are still not satisfied," Schmidt said.

Google services that extend from its core search engine include Google Book Search, Google Earth, Google Maps, Google Finance and Google Desktop, among others. In fact, the company has been launching services so fast that some critics think the company is overextending itself.

Schmidt acknowledged that the company is facing growing pressure from competitors, naming Microsoft and Yahoo as Google's top rivals. He called this competition healthy, maintaining that more competition in an auction scenario actually drives up prices, creating more revenue for all market participants.

The company also expects to build out its storage and networking infrastructure to handle new services and ensure optimum performance, he said. Users have criticized Google because some of its extended services, such as Google Desktop and its mobile search engine Google Mobile, don't work very well or at all.

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Elizabeth Montalbano

IDG News Service
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