🟢 The year the GAFAMs could disappear. Episode 1, Google

In this series of five articles, I will discuss each of the current GAFAMs as 2023 might be the year their reign of supremacy on our life, work, and social connection comes to an end.

🟢 The year the GAFAMs could disappear. Episode 1, Google
Photo by Mitchell Luo / Unsplash

We've been living for more than fifteen years with the looming presence of the GAFAMs. With market capitalization beyond the trillion dollars and market reach beyond a billion people, these giant corporations have redefined our life, work, and social tissue. For as many years, we analyzed and theorized their supremacy, chasing who would come and dethrone them in the worldwide startup scene. In Europe, we spent an ungodly amount of money and intellectual resources trying to figure out Silicon Valley, mimicking, like a deranged cargo cult, its way of thinking, mannerisms, and language – while forgetting that most of these companies were built at the time against their regional ecosystem.

But since Covid and even more since the end of 2022, there's been a disturbance in the force. Signs of frailty are showing. Facebook's (Meta) historic $1.07T valuation dropped to a measly $560B. Apple's dependence on China's market is a ticking bomb. Google might be rendered obsolete overnight by AI. Etc.

We thought these giants had everything figured out, calmly harvesting money out of everyone in the economy while protected by massive network effect, and yet...

Is this the end of times for "tech" as we knew it? Let's discuss...

Episode 1, Google

The company founded in 1998 and now rebranded and regrouped as Alphabet is certainly the iconic startup story. Launched by Larry Page and Sergey Brin during their Ph.D. at Stanford University, the company crunched the burgeoning search engine market and has been the de facto "ask me anything" website since then. The famously blank landing page with a silly logo and just a search box is beyond iconic. It was also the first to push the ad revenues business model to an extreme. Users are the product, and the real customers are businesses trying to sell anything from sex toys to jet planes.

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