Eric Schmidt at TechCrunch Disrupt

>>ARRINGTON: Thank you for coming Eric.
>>SCHMIDT: Thanks Michael and congratulations.>>ARRINGTON: Thank you.
>>SCHMIDT: You want me to just start?>>ARRINGTON: I was–Yeah, I was told…
>>SCHMIDT: Okay. No problem.>>ARRINGTON: I’m sorry. I’m sorry. Actually
I have some things on my mind this morning and…
>>SCHMIDT: Okay. Okay. Yeah, you’ve been a little busy.
>>ARRINGTON: The person on stage, next to me, is Eric Schmidt. He’s a CEO of Google.
Anyone who hasn’t heard him please raise your hand.
>>SCHMIDT: No. No. That’s fine.>>ARRINGTON: And, okay, I have no idea what
he’s going to say but every time he’s spoken, and I found it fascinating.
>>SCHMIDT: Thank you. Thank you.>>ARRINGTON: I hope you talk about mobile
and social and that one other thing that we emailed about. If that could just–those three
things will be good.>>SCHMIDT: Okay. Well, congratulations again
Michael.>>ARRINGTON: The stage is yours.
>>SCHMIDT: Thank you. What I–and thank you guys for having me. I know this is a very
important conference. What I wanted to talk about a little bit was what are things going
to happen next. It seems to me that we’re at yet another one of those [INDISTINCT] points
in technology where something interesting is about to happen. And if you think about
it, the–this audience, what you’re all doing and so forth, represents another transition
in the way people will use information and use computers to make amazing things happen.
One of the–I’m trying to think about how to express this and I think one term I would
suggest for you is–what we’re really doing is building an augmented version of humanity.
That fundamentally what we’re doing is we’re basically getting computers to help us do
the things that we’re not very good at and humans are already helping computers do the
things they’re not very good at. So, in theory, the combination of the two could produce some
really new experiences. So, if you think about it, the longer term goal is actually a little
different from what we’d normally talk about. It’s really about having people be happier.
That in fact, that the use of computers, the use of the information, the use of all the
things that we’re all building can make us all have better, more productive, more fun,
more entertaining lives. And that to me is the opportunity that is really before us.
There are lots and lots and lost of data point to suggest this. Forty percent of internet
users around the world spend 13 hours or more around online. It’s interesting that the 2009
word of the year in–according to the New Oxford Dictionary was “unfriend”, right? That
we’re all now using this technology in this very fundamental way. And what’s happening
is that there are these three trends that are accelerating and that the sum of them
is driving this enormous phenomena that we see here today and that we’ve seen around
the world. Everyone of you has a smartphone, sort of–it turns that it’s the defining and
iconic device of our time. What’s interesting about smartphones is that in–within two years,
smartphones will surpass PC sales. We’re already seeing a very, very strong and accelerating
growth there and mobile is a larger market in a lot of way. I like to think of it as
your strategy should be mobile first. Indeed, most of the companies that are previewing
here, the 25 or so over the next two days, are fundamentally mobile centric in some very
fundamental way. And in fact mobile web adoption which is, when we were measuring this, is
occurring eight times faster than the equivalent point with the personal computer 15 years
ago. And so, it gives you a sense of the scale [INDISTINCT]. Why–it’s why everybody’s so
tired, why everybody’s so frazzled. It’s because it’s such a larger market. And we–we’re in
a situation where we have pervasive connectivity. It’s no longer the case that your music player
can avoid being connected to a WiFi network. A music player by itself, which has stored
music on it, is not nearly as interesting as a music player that has stored music and
has the ability to interact with the music that’s available to it real time and around
it. And we take this for granted but it’s worth saying that in the next year, in the
United States and in some other countries, the rollout of LTE as it’s called will occur
across many cities from a number of vendors. And LTE, which stands for long term evolution,
is a 50 megabits spec and indeed it’s been tested of that and the expected average performance
was between eight to ten megabits. Wow. And what are you going to do with eight to ten
megabits? Well, I’m sure, not only will we soak it up but we’ll come up with other ideas
because that’s what drives the innovation cycle. And I remember–I remember thinking
if I could just get to one megabit, that it would all be so different. In the case of
other countries, South Korea for example, has just set a goal of having one gigabit
per second to each and every inhabitant by the year 2015. Finland established a national
law that said that it was a right of every Fin to have 100 megabits by the year 2013.
So, other countries are even farther ahead of us in this. This has a lot of, again, implications
because it means that you’re always connected and you’re always online. One of the estimates
is that there are 35 billion devices and so forth. And they’re, by the way, they’re in
cars and sensors and medical devices and so forth and so on; in everywhere you could possibly
imagine. So, the combination of pervasive–pervasive connectivity and these mobile devices is backed
up cloud computing. Many of you are working on cloud computing; we’ve worked on it as
an industry for a very long time. What does it really mean to have cloud computing? I’ll
give you a simple example. We can now demonstrate and are in the process of getting ready to
ship products which allow you to speak in English and have it come out on the other
end of the phone in another language, for example German. Now how does that actually
work? Does you phone do all that work? And, you know, your phone is so–so incredibly
powerful that it knows how to go from one to a hundred other languages? Of course not.
All the phone is doing is it’s taking your voice, digitizing it, and sending it through
the network to a server. That server is doing a speech to text translation, which is relatively
well done these days. We can then statically translate the text to text from one language
to another, and then we go through a voice synthesizer, this again on the server, and
come back and give it to the other phone, speaking the other language. Now, to me, this
is the stuff of science fiction. You know, “Oh, my God,” that we can actually do this.
And the fact that this can be done in a half a second, a quarter a second, which we think
is too long by the way, by thousand of computers in a server room far, far away, is immaterial
to the person who is just trying to communicate with the person who doesn’t speak their own
language. So, to me cloud computing can be understood as the magic behind what the phones
can actually do. The cloud computing in phones here means tablets and so forth and so on.
And for me cloud computing will fundamentally be expressed not in the way that we use to
talk about it, which has to do with web services and so forth, but rather in these new services
that make your life just work and work in really interesting way. There are lots and
lots of other examples of what cloud computing can do but one way to think about it is you’ve
got a mobile device and you’ve got a supercomputer and the two are connected by this pervasive
network and that’s what all of us are building. Now this concept, this concept of making humans
better is not a new concept. It’s one that’s been around for a long time. In 1990 in–at
COMDEX, Bill Gates talked about information at your fingertips, all the information that
someone might be interested in, including information they can’t even get today. Now,
what happened? Why did it take 20 years to get there? Well, we had to build all the infrastructure.
We had to actually build the servers, build the cloud computing, build the standards,
do all of the issues around collaborate filtering, all of the underlying AI research. That it
was necessary to do this, so 20 years later that vision is very much a reality. And if
you think about it, it’s not just the hearing and the speaking that I was talking about,
there’s also understanding. And we can now get, with modern AI techniques, to things
which look awfully a lot like real understanding. And of course, they really aren’t, and computers
are not the same thing as people, and so forth and so on. So, what is driving Google to try
to do this? Why is this important? This vision, I think, is now well accepted and exciting
and so forth and so on. One way to think about it is that we want to give you your time back.
That in an information centric world, you have two problems, you have this over load
of information and you have too much to do. So, in one sense, giving it to you quicker,
right? Speed maters. Never underestimate the importance of speed and fast really does pay
back in terms of your life. It also means that you can use the services faster. You
can learn more things and so forth and so on. But there’s another, and rather current
obstacle point, that although we talk about the speed of computers and Moore’s Law and
so forth in these networks, there’s another explosion which is the explosion of information.
And that this explosion of information is so profoundly large. It’s so much larger than
anybody every expected that you need some help navigating it and ultimately, search
engines and the other knowledge engines that everybody is building will morph over time
into things which help you figure out what you should be consuming, what information
you should care about right now. So, in our case with search, we do more than 2 billion
searches a day. Think about the scale of that. And of course, we care about the time for
this. We did–it’s interesting, there’s a quote from Linus Pauling “Satisfaction of
one’s curiosity is one of the greatest sources of happiness in life.” And indeed, much of
Google seems to be about that. And we make lots and lots of improvements of this. The
most recent one was Google Instant which people know about and you said–you go, “Why is it–Google
Instant so important? Why do we spend so much money and time on it?” Because it shaves a
couple seconds off of the whole query cycle and a couple seconds off that many different
people really makes a huge difference in terms of people productivity. We have one of the
largest data bases of information in the world which we’ve engineered and which is very,
very difficult technologically in order to house all that information and ready for more.
So, where do we go next with search? Well, you’ve got personal contacts, personal emails,
personal network of people and your relationships with them, and with your permission–and I
need to say that about 500 times–with your permission, we can actually search and index
that information and make all of these answers so much better. The next step after that is
obviously autonomous search. This is searches that you’re–that are occurring while you’re
not even doing searching. For me, you know, I like history. Here I am in San Francisco,
as I walk down the streets I want my mobile device in this case to tell me what happened,
where it’s going, so forth and so on. Tell me things that I don’t know, tell me things
that I’m–that I would be interested. Think of it as a serendipity engine. That–think
of it as a new way of thinking about traditional text search where you don’t even have to type.
We’re also trying to understand what you mean when you search. You know, when you say “What’s
the weather like?” What you really are asking is, “Well, should I wear a raincoat or should
I water the plants?” And we can with improvements in algorithms, more information with your
permission and so forth, we can get closer to be able to answering the question that
you really ask. And we’re also thinking about other forms of specialized searches and so
forth, as everybody knows. What’s interesting about mobile is that the mobile opportunity
is so large, it’s breath taking. Our mobile search traffic grew 50 percent in the first
half of 2010. Our mobile business doubled over the last year. Android, I think everybody
here knows how successful that is. The numbers are staggering, more than 200,000 phones per
day, devices I guess technically but mostly phones, now powering more than 60 devices
from 21 OEM partners across 59 carriers and 49 countries, with deals happening everyday.
So, the momentum is only accelerating. It’s interesting that the search traffic from Android
phones more than tripled in the first half of 2010. Chrome, our browser, is a good example
of what it’s going to take to build the kind of architecture and platforms that I’m talking
about. If you want to build an open web which Google is committed to, and I should say right
up front that Google’s core strategy is openness. Other companies, notably Apple, have a core
strategy of closiveness. Ours is fundamentally an open one, an open web, an open internet.
It’s sort of how we actually–how we actually drive everything. You’re going to need a powerful
browser, Chrome now has more than 70 million users and it’s getting a lot faster. Remember
that speed thing? Latest release is four times faster than the first release two years ago.
And so if you think about a powerful browser that’s more of a platform which is what chrome
is; secure, scalable, fast and with a lot of speed, Chrome allows you to run applications
within the browser that you could do autonomously. So, autonomous action within the browser that
enables this whole new platform that I’m talking about. And, of course there’s lots to do about
monetizing content. As everybody here knows, it’s just as important to have the money side
of the business and the monetization side, in particular, as well as the technological
side. We have a lot of good news to report there. Twenty-four hours of video uploaded
every minute into YouTube, just think about it. More than two billion views per day of
YouTube. Again, think of all the time being wasted, I suspect. A hundred and sixty million
mobile views per day, more than doubled than the last year. The numbers here at scale are
really something. And the business is doing well, more than two billion monetized views
per week in YouTube and the number of advertisers and the number of monetized views up more
than 50% in the last year. Similarly, the display business; many of you partner using
Display Revenue and so forth is also taking off. We have more than 300 million view–visitors
a day in our display network. Three quarter of the–sort of a three quarter of the world’s
Internet users come through it in one way or the other. And the double-click platforms
serve more than 45 billion ads per day. So, the sum of those, not only give you a platform
opportunity around Chrome and Android and those technologies as well as this notion
of core information search, but they also give you a way to monetize. So, again, returning,
let’s say right up front that it’s a big bet unopened. So, let me turn and comment on a
couple of things and then take your questions. It seems to me, first and foremost that the
Internet is one of the most disruptive technologies in history. The Schumpeter quote, of course,
people have heard perhaps, “Capitalism inevitably leads to a perennial gale of creative destruction.”
You are the creative destruction, right? This is it. This is ground zero right here, if
you will. And what’s happened is that the Internet has replaced the economics of scarcity
with the economics of ubiquity. And the businesses that rely on controlling content and limiting
content are at risk to businesses that understand that content should be broadly available at
all forms and monetized in new ways–new forms of distribution, et cetera. And these businesses
are both exciting and terrifying. They’re exciting because of the scale. You can reach
a billion people literally overnight in a new way. They’re terrifying because it has
all to do with information. And information is stuff that people care a lot about. And
so, all of a sudden, when you’re in that business, you find yourself–you’re confronted with
all sorts of criticism, regulation, investigation and so forth and so on. And from my perspective,
and I think from our perspective at Google, these debates are healthy, because many of
the questions are really unresolved, the debates over privacy, the debates over encryption.
These are fundamental questions that society has to face because of the disruptive nature
of the Internet and the new kind of power that it gives to end users. We fundamentally
are giving people an enormous amount of technological power in their hands in this [INDISTINCT].
And that shape–shapes and changes the power relationship between citizens and governments,
citizens and private companies, citizens and each other, and the law, and so forth and
so on. So if you put all of this together and you think about what does this really
means, you can think of this as another Golden Era. And in this case, I think it’s a Golden
Era of breakthroughs; breakthroughs like we’ve seen in the last couple of years based on
this platform. One way to think about this, is think about how can computer science, and
science in general, help with these breakthroughs? Global warming, terrorism, financial transparency,
these are all fundamentally information problems. So all of us, in one way or another, can help
there. So imagine a future–imagine a future involving all of us, it looks roughly like
this. And by the way, this is the near future. It’s a future where you don’t forget anything
because the computer sort of knows things and remembers things. And computers will clearly
be good at doing the things that we’re no good at, making list or memory things, keeping
memories of what we do. They’re not very good with things like judgment. And although there
are predictions in that area, I think it’s unlikely that they’re going to do a very good
job for a pretty long time. But one thing they’re very, very good at is dealing with
billions of things and scanning them and data mining them and all those kinds of things.
And people will develop new ways of doing that. In this new future, you’re never lost,
all right? You don’t get lost anymore. It used to be fun to get lost. Now you look at
your Google Maps or whatever–however you navigate, and you have exact images of where
you are. And what’s interesting is that we can, and with new technology, we will know
your position down to the foot or even to the inch, over time. So all of a sudden, there’s
a lot of implications for how exploration occurs and our sense of how small the world
has really become. Your car should drive itself. It’s amazing to me that we let humans drive
cars. Computers should drive cars. It’s obvious, right? If you think about it, it’s a sort
of an–it’s a bug that cars were invented before computers, right, in that sense. And
all of a sudden, it will be much, much safer when we let the computers do the things that
they’re good at, and then humans can talk or eat or whatever they want to do in the
car. You get the idea. What’s interesting about the Earth is people who love the Earth
can love it more. You can learn much more about our planet because you can visualize
it and you can see it. There are very, very large numbers of people who are now using
Google Earth and other mapping platforms to study the impact of the–of the only world
that we’ve all ever really known. You can really have all the world’s information at
your fingertips, so–in any language with universal translation. We’re basically at
the point where we can do a hundred by a hundred matrix of translation. That has a lot of implications
again for global understanding, both the good and the bad. And the fact that we can now
do it dynamically and in real time is a huge breakthrough for understanding how people
and the world will evolve. You also can know now what to pay attention to right now, right?
Amidst the explosion of real time information, with your permission again, we can help you
understand what you should focus on next, because we have the tools, we have the understanding,
we known–we know what you care about, and we know what’s going on. And we can even suggest
the things that you might be interested based on various algorithms involving serendipity
and so forth and so on. You’re never lonely. You’re fundamentally never lonely because
it’s always–your friends are always online. And if you’re awake, you’re probably online.
And if your children are awake, they’re certainly online. That’s a huge shift, even in the last
10 years. There’s always somebody to speak with, text to, talk to and so forth. You’re
never bored. You’re really never bored. Instead of wasting time watching television, you can
waste time watching the Internet, right? Whenever you’re sitting there and you’re bored, there
are so many choices now. This is another change. It’s a change that’s occurred in, like, the
last 10 or 15 years, and one which is not going to come back. Games, movies, videos,
and we can suggest again what you watch or what you not. You’re never out of ideas. We
can suggest where you go next, what to do, who to read, who to meet. Imagine a world’s
calendar of events and things that you would like. Now, this is a future. What is particularly
interesting about this future is that this is a future for the average person, not just
the elite. Historically, information markets focused on the elites. It was the elites who
had access to information, they ran around, they we’re all very pompous in the way that
elites are. But what’s neatest about this all is that because of technology and because
of the information access, this is a future for a billion people now, two billion and
a few, and certainly in our lifetimes, five or five–five out of the six billion or six
out of the seven billion of people that will be alive today. So not only are you playing
for a space that’s important, you’re playing for something which really touches almost
everyone. So this, in my view, and this is, I think, a shared goal with all of us, is
a future that’s committed to doing good. It’s a future that gives people time to do more
of the things that they matter, thoughts, ideas, intuition, solutions, things that they
want to do. It’s a future that’s sort of stuff of poetry, if you will. There’s a quote which
I’ll finish with from William Gibson in the New York Times two weeks ago, “Google is made
of us; a sort of corral reef of human minds and their products.” I think this opportunity
is right before us. I want to thank TechCrunch, Michael and the whole team, for letting me
come by and talk about this. And thank you very much, and I look forward to your questions.
Okay.>>Thank you. So, there are mics…
>>SCHMIDT: [INDISTINCT]>>Thank you very much. There are mics in
back and there are people with mics going around, so I encourage you to either line
up or raise your hand. And let me start off with one question. I mean…
>>SCHMIDT: Sure.>>…some people are claiming that Silicon
Valley doesn’t solve hard problems. Yet everything just described seems to counter that. But
it raises a bigger question about the role of Search in the way that we discover information.
Up ’till now, it seems like the Search Engine has been the central place you start, and
then you go and you find information. Yet increasingly, we’re starting to see new technologies,
many of them social, where the information gets pushed to you or filtered to you, and
you’re not really searching for it.>>SCHMIDT: Okay.
>>You set up your filters, whether that’s your friends or whatever it may be, and it
comes to you. So what role does Search play in that world?
>>SCHMIDT: Oh, that–the model that you’re describing is exactly what happens with technologies
in Silicon Valley. It started off as a real–very simple idea, Tech Search, and then they become
pervasive and they become ubiquitous. It’s still Search, but it’s Search done in a different
way. And I think that’s wonderful. The fact of the matter is that in order to do the kind
of searches that you’re describing, you still need a very large database of information,
you still need the underlying search engine, but it’s initiated from a different point.
It’s initiated from a friend’s list or some autonomous thing or a location. We have a
product, Google Goggles which will–you take a picture of something and it actually does
16 different searches and it [INDISTINCT] as to what it is. Is it an animal? [INDISTINCT]
mineral? Is it a landmark? Is it a menu? And does it work with OCR? So, to me, what you’re–the
story you’re referring is a time-honored story of the Valley. And I would argue that the
Valley did a lot of very disruptive things. If you take a look at Silicon Valley, in general,
and information technology and in green energy, it’s a bit–two of the most important things
affecting our planet today. In information, what I have learned in my career, is in information
that so many people care an enormous amount about. And so, to think that what we’re doing
here will not be controversial is to be naīve. Of course, when you’re dealing with information
in the forms that you describe, or I describe, you will have critics, there will be interesting
issues and there’ll be lots and lots of challenges for all of us.
>>Okay. I think we have some questions at the back. Can you start right there? Say your
name and make your questions briefly.>>CASS: Hi, my name is Abee Cass. And I was
wondering how you plan on making Search more serendipitous. Don’t you need, like, additional
information about an individual’s taste graft, to borrow a term from Chris Dixon?
>>How you make Search more serendipitous.>>SCHMIDT: So today, a simple explanation
for how our Search ranking work is we use a set of hundreds of signals. The signals
are scored and ranked. So, the answer that you get in traditional text search is a reflection
of that scoring. The more information that we have about you, the better the search results.
So if, for example, you are logged in and we know your search history, we can give you
a more targeted answer. It’ll be a slightly better result. So we preserve anonymous search,
[INDISTINCT] we think that’s important for end users, but we prefer that we know more
about you. We know, at least, your IP address, and then–that kind of information. We can
do serendipity with the kinds of information–a typical example would be if we know who your
friends are or information about your other patterns, we can sort of suggest that other
people like you found this interesting. The technology is generally known as collaborative
filtering, and it technically works pretty well. That’s a simple preview of much more
complex things that we can also do. All right.>>Next question right there.
>>ATACHA: Hi. Jack Atacha from The Next Web. First of all, that was a great speech.
>>SCHMIDT: Oh, thank you.>>ATACHA: You’re welcome. So my question
is, Google does a lot of things, but as CEO, moving forward, if you can only do one thing,
focus on one thing, what would it be?>>SCHMIDT: Well, the answer at Google continues
to be Search. And the most important thing is the transformation of traditional text
search, which is syntactic in nature, to the semantic version of search that we were discussing
earlier, where we understand the context and the meaning of what you’re looking for. So
the sum of that is really the semantic aspects, the probabilistic aspects, the deeper index,
and the personal information along with information such as your friends list.
>>Okay. Next question?>>ZO: Kevin Zo from Xerox. Google do lots
of things. I know you focused on search. I know you also help in the country, like the
clean energy and healthcare all those really tough, you know, issues. Can you share me
a bit about, you know, what are you doing on the healthcare side?
>>Healthcare? What do we do in health care?>>SCHMIDT: We’ve done some analysis of how
Google is used and the internal analyses indicate that somewhere between 3% and 5% of the queries
that we get are health related. So we went, “Oh, my God, people might actually be using
this for real health–for diagnosing real problems.” And so, we hired a set of doctors
and a set of people who understand the medical area much better than we did to help us categorize
and score our results. That’s probably the most important thing that we’ve done. We are
also building an infrastructure for health questions that–where you log in and you give
us health information. That area is complicated because it’s governed by both HIPAA, the healthcare
regulations as well as the need to integrate with the health IT systems, which are just
torturous. You cannot imagine how painful it is to deal with 20 years’ worth of pre-XML
based databases and try to get all these database records together. So that’s been relatively
slow growing–going, but eventually, we think we’ll produce even better health information
for people and obviously, with their permission under appropriate HIPAA guidance and appropriate
security.>>Next question. Right there.
>>Thank you.>>NADAL: Hi my name, Francois. I’m the CEO
of I would like to know what would trigger 500 million small businesses to totally
move into the Cloud with Google?>>SCHMIDT: Well, that’s a very kind question
because we have a product to offer you.>>NADAL: Thank you.
>>SCHMIDT: The way to set the question up is to say 20 years ago when you were setting
up a small business, you had to go and buy a personal computer or a small server–I was
in that business of selling them at that time–and you had to have IT professional and you had
to run it in-house. The right thing for a small business to do now is to not have any
computers except the things which are on people’s desktops and on their smartphones, anything
like that, and do everything in the Cloud. So the components would be an e-mail system,
a calendar system, a sales force automation system, various–and then the stuff that’s
vertical for whatever their business is. Google is one of the companies that offers products
that–we decided to price it low, $50 a year per user. We have infinite demand for that
at that price, so we know that’s a good price. And what we’re doing is we’re signing them
up, literally, millions of small businesses at a time. What will it take to get 500 million
I think is additional features, additional language support, additional integration with
existing database systems that people have, because people do have existing systems; they’re
not pure plays. And my guess is that an obvious thing to do would be to have a Cloud-based
workflow system that works pretty generically. So if I could ask for one thing, I think that
calendar, Gmail, the word processing, that stuff is pretty well under control. Turns
out all the vendors, including Google, are now offering things there. The next thing
to do is do Cloud-based workflow to actually integrate the business processes of the business
and I think you’re done. That’s all you got. That’s all you need.
>>When did mobile search become material for Google? I know it’s growing very fast,
but what percentage of total searches are mobile today? When does it become a material?
>>SCHMIDT: Since you asked the material–you used the word material, I have to give you
the financially correct answer which is not now and not soon, simply because the number–the
revenue for mobile is so dwarfed by the other sources of revenue. And we wouldn’t give a
prediction of how. It is growing much faster than web stuff. It’s still not quite at the
same level of monetization for various reasons which we’re working on. So I think the best
answer I can give you is eventually we think mobile will be the majority of the searches
and majority of the revenue, but it’s a long time.
>>But is it less than 1% now? Less than 5%?>>SCHMIDT: Again, I can’t give you a specific
number.>>What about Google Me? When is that going
to launch?>>SCHMIDT: Google Me is a rumored product
which I won’t comment on.>>Go ahead.
>>COLDEWEY: Hi there, this is Devin Coldewey from TechCrunch. And I think that most people
have a pretty good idea of what Google is talking about when they say “Don’t be evil.”
But I think that when you say that you want to be open, that’s just as subtle of a concept
and something that’s just as difficult to pin down. So I was wondering if you could
help us understand what Google really means when you say that you want to be open?
>>SCHMIDT: Well, it’s easier to understand if by opposition, so the easiest–the easiest
comparison to do today with a broad audience is to talk about Apple–the Apple model and
the Web model. The Apple model, which works extremely well, speaking as a proud former
board member, you have to use their development tools, their platform, their hardware, their
software. If you submit an application, they have to approve it. They have to use their
monetization and their distribution. That would not be open, right? So the inverse would
be open. It’s just that simple.>>COLDEWEY: so, not Apple then?
>>SCHMIDT: That would be in it.>>COLDEWEY: Fair enough.
>>SCHMIDT: Yeah. So in our case, for example, we had fun–Flash was allegedly a problem,
so we love Flash, we want Flash, we demonstrated Flash doing extremely well on Android. That’s
an example of openness. Let the user decide. The user can decide whether HTML5 or Flash
will ultimately dominate our own opinion, just probably both will do pretty well for
a while. Let the user decide that, that’s what openness is.
>>Yet you have some carriers that when you have an Android phone, they put some apps
on the phone that are hard to remove.>>SCHMIDT: Well, the good news about the
carriers is that they can add, but they don’t delete. So, again, openness is having choices.
And if you don’t like those apps, you could buy a vendor that does not have those apps
on it.>>Okay.
>>SCHMIDT: And with the level of competition on Android, we suspect that if you feel–that
you and the majority of people here feel very strongly about those apps that you don’t like,
those vendors will get a very clear message that those apps need to be deleted. That’s
how markets work.>>All right.
>>Next question we have about time for one or two more.
>>METZ: Cade Metz with the Register. There–any trust investigations of Google underway in
Texas and in the EU, and part of the complaint is that Google’s universal search allows the
company to kind of push their own services such as Google Product Search, such as Google
Maps, at the expense of competitors. Do you see it that way? And does universal search
use different algorithms, separate algorithms from primary search?
>>SCHMIDT: We don’t see it that way. And, indeed, it appears to us that those investigations,
that’s your term not mine, are simulated by competitors who have a very, very clear invested
interest in the outcome. Our answer on universal search, which we spend a lot of time on, is
that we have chosen the vendor of information that produces the best end user outcome. And
sometimes that’s a Google source, sometimes it’s not a Google source. And it’s not okay
to say you shouldn’t use any Google sources and it’s also not okay to say that you should
only use Google sources. We, in fact, use a mixture and we believe and we think that
if there are, in fact, investigations, their investigations will show that that’s, in fact,
how we operate.>>METZ: Thank you.
>>How has Google Instant affected your query volume? And how do you measure query volume
now?>>SCHMIDT: That’s a very good technical question.
The simplest answer is it’s–at the end of the day it’s pretty much neutral to positive.
There’s a lot of dynamics to change, you know, people–it’s all–remember it’s faster. So,
you actually, on a margin, you’re done faster but you also get more queries. But at the
end of the day it’s neutral to positive. [INDISTINCT]>>But the–so, when I type in a search and
I get literally five or 10 different results, that doesn’t count as five or 10 different
queries? Because I–because I keep typing or it counts it as the one final query?
>>SCHMIDT: Again, in the measurements system that we use, right, it works out that we get
the same behavioral [INDISTINCT]–same eventual pages that people go to, and so forth and
so on. It does happen more quickly which is good. So, neutral to positive.
>>Right. Question right there.>>WRIGHT: Hi. Maurice Wright, Pay4Tweet.
Pay number four Tweet. Google has a pretty dominant position as an advertiser. I’m wondering
what’s your opinion on Twitter as an advertising platform and does Google plan on buying them
at some point?>>SCHMIDT: Well, I can’t answer the latter.
I just can’t talk about any of–any activity. Twitter strikes me as being a very, very important
platform in general, simply because of the scale that they operate. If you look at the
reach they have. And so Twitter should and again these are people we know well and we
have a partnership with them on some–on showing some search results, Twitter should be able
to come up with advertising and monetization products, at least in our opinion, that are
highly lucrative. So, we think that they’re going to do very, very well.
>>So, let me take a question from Twitter which is, are you worried about talent leaving
Google and creating innovation outside of Google? That maybe Google should have captured–Foursquare
is the primary example, but there’s endless examples of Google alums starting companies,
and someone launching on, you know, on stage. As you get to the size that you are, you know,
you can’t, obviously, you can’t capture all the innovation. But how do you handle that?
>>SCHMIDT: I would say it’s one of many worries. That when you have a large company, you know,
the executive [INDISTINCT] development, dealing with a larger organization, decision making,
and so forth and so on. It’s not a huge crisis if put that way. But it’s an important sort
of criticism of the company. From our perspective, we do–we do what we can. Foursquare is a
good example where these are two people who are very, very clever, who were at Google
too early, if you will. And when the opportunity to do Foursquare, which is hugely successful,
came along, it was just better for them to do it outside. They’d already left Google.
And we wish them the best of luck. Obviously, we would prefer those things to occur within
Google but the fact of the matter is that there–that part of the robustness of the
market is that there have to be multiple successful companies, IPOs, wealth creation opportunities,
it’s how the system works.>>How often do you take that 20% project
that was too early and revive it when it’s time for it?
>>SCHMIDT: It’s done bottoms up not tops down. So, there’s no way to estimate that,
but usually everyone of our engineers is encouraged to do a 20% project and they believe in them.
So, they come out. Or if they leave the company, they do it as a start up. So, we understand
that if their passion is there we need to face–do we want to do this? do we care about
it?–is important.>>One final question, right there.
>>PARIKH: Yes, I’m Chintu Parikh, CEO and co-founder of SACHManya. Makers of award winning
Yapper, your app maker [INDISTINCT].>>Yeah. Your question please.
>>PARIKH: So, we would like to tightly integrate with Android on marketplace API. And are you
going to open that up any time soon?>>SCHMIDT: So, the Android marketplace API?
>>PARIKH: Yes. So, we can even make, you know, the app development much faster. Right
now, it takes half an hour. It can go live in half an hour with Android marketplace.
>>SCHMIDT: And so you want it to be less than a half an hour?
>>PARIKH: Less than–right now we have to submit the binary to the Android market place.
>>SCHMIDT: I see.>>PARIKH: And then, you know, that’s a manual
process. Instead of that, we would like to automate the whole thing.
>>SCHMIDT: That sounds like a great proposal. Let me work on it. I’m sure the answer will
be yes.>>Do you think that the–one hot topic obviously
right now is, these places databases that you’re creating and everyone’s creating,2
and there seems to be a lot of replication that a lot of different businesses from AOL
to Google to Startups are basically creating their own places database. Do you think that–would
you support an open places database?>>SCHMIDT: Well, first when I said that we
would argue that you can use our databases as open APIs already.
>>Okay.>>SCHMIDT: I thought the question you were
going to ask had to do with the copyright questions. So, the problem with the places
databases is it they’re very, very serious issues of copyright and ownership of that
information, and we’re working through all of those. But usually what happens is these
databases, there end up being a couple and usually the one that’s most successful is
open. So, the simple rule and the Google rule is we’re going do open things, make these
things exposed, make them accessible.>>Terrific. Well, please give…
>>SCHMIDT: Thank you all.>>…Eric a warm round of applause.
>>SCHMIDT: Take care.>>Thank you very much.
>>SCHMIDT: Thank you.

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50 thoughts on “Eric Schmidt at TechCrunch Disrupt

  1. @pjotrkiller They are a youtube partner (noticable by a icon to the left of "edit subscribers"). YouTube partners are people who choice to be partnered with YouTube. There are many YouTube partners, but the trick for keeping your kind (sheeple, from your lack of knowledge) coming back is making short videos that require short attention. companies that are worth a damn make long"informative"videos. Next time you pull out your keyboard you Google it before writing it. And yes, i hate you. >: |

  2. @ENDTHEWARGAMES if we step outside of our own minds, thought provocative discussions are equal in importance to mindless videos. Life changing information 'infects' people just like pointless rants. you may be upset that people are wasting their time on 'garbage' but ultimately each individual creates their own definition for what is and isn't garbage (btw, i would much rather watch and listen to a video than read, videos contain much more subtle information which reading could never convey)

  3. @MistafiedHybrid I'm paying pretty close attention to the growth of technology, and to my understanding robotics and man machine interface is still pretty pathetic. A lot of great theories, but the vast majority are extremely impractical to implement at this point in time. So what can China and Japan do that i may not have heard of?

  4. @MistafiedHybrid hahaha ok, i think you just joined the ranks of the very people you're talking about, don't underestimate the people you interact with, they just may be setting a trap. Im not worried, every move that a country, group, or even the individual makes goes under scrutiny by its peers. If the information truly resonates, it will reach the masses shortly.

  5. @MistafiedHybrid I'm curious, what exactly do you gain from looking at the stock prices from day to day? Without any background information aren't they meaningless? If the market drops 4 points because someone hit their head accidentally that day, which resulted in sold shares, will you ever be able to take that into account?

  6. "Listened to this video, that day it came out. And now I have a cold, have been sick for the past 3 days." Or maybe you have a cold because right now is the cold season.

  7. @LuminousCosmos You got the history wrong, it was in fact the "nightmare scenario" which you described. So society has evolved as it is. Primary school propaganda about "liberty" is just silly.

  8. @everlasteternalcures
    MP3s aren't the internet. MP3s are something a music artists makes, they have the right to sell their property. For example Ubuntu has a music store built into it where music artists put their music up for sale, where you can buy and download music. Does that mean Ubuntu isn't open?
    That has nothing to do with an open web…
    What does copyrights have to do with anything? Copyrights have nothing to do with the web itself ..

  9. @everlasteternalcures
    How about an actual argument?
    Your argument is basically "Your wrong". You don't give any examples or evidence.
    Why don't you educate yourself in constructing a real argument?

  10. @Gimpson21 He gets paid in stocks, not money (his salary is $1 per year), so doing his job well = how much he gets paid.

  11. "This fundamental phenomena for us working in the mobile industry for a very long time.. and so forth and so on.." *Genius voice*

  12. @pyreneeamour He's a "professional ceo", it's part of his training. You can tell who's who by how they speak, the geeks sound like kermit the frog (sergey, mark, larry etc) and the outside-hired ceos are professional speakers

  13. 17:40 im exactly thinking like him. No more traffic jams or accidents anymore, faster and more secure travelling and doing the things you like while travelling from home to your job and dont get screwed up in traffic. Thats a Dream! Im 100% shure we will get to this earlyer than we all think.

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