Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Google continues Going and Going

The Google empire continues to expand. Its $625 million bid for Web security service Postini has sailed through federal review for antitrust compliance, clearing the way for the acquisition.

Google announced its plans in July, saying it wanted to expand its package of online applications to better compete with Microsoft Office.

The addition of Postini technology indeed enhances Google Apps, launched as Web applications and now offering desktop functions. But, of course, it's online that security issues are most significant, and Postini says its industrial strength antispam technology is used on 10 million systems by 35,000 businesses worldwide (including, as full disclosure, PC World).

Google's online apps are already operating where Microsoft has been moving with its Office family and increased focus on software as (hosted) services. As my colleague Melissa Perenson points out in her initial report on Google's Postini bid, this will bring those security tools to small businesses--some of whom are running Google Apps, or may be more likely to now.

The Federal Trade Commission's antitrust authorities reviewed and blessed the deal in less than a month. Google has said it will operate Postini as a wholly owned subsidiary. And the weaponry piles up in the battle between the giants of the Silicon Valley and the Silicon Forest.

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