nick carr and henry blodget both give pessimistic
reviews of the merger for macro reasons.
nick carr, writing in forbes:
"The proposed deal also means this: Scale is everything.
"The Net has long been seen as a great leveler of playing
fields, a system that diminishes the advantages of size and
lets individuals and small businesses compete with giants.
But that's turning out to be an illusion. What we've seen
recently is that success on the Web requires the aggregation
of vast quantities of content and traffic, the collection of
enormous stores of data about users, and the brokering and
distribution of billions of ads.
"When it comes to Internet scale, Microsoft finds itself in
the unusual position of playing catch-up. Google not only
dominates search and advertising, but it has been investing
many billions of dollars in building a network of massive
online data centers. Those so-called server farms provide the
processing muscle for all the new Web apps--and a big
competitive advantage for Google.
"Windows and Office will continue to be cash cows for Microsoft
for many years. But they're yesterday's products. Microsoft
knows that to succeed in the future, it has to expand its
online operations fast. The rich offer for Yahoo! may be risky,
but at this point Microsoft has more money than time."
"Steve Ballmer knows which products butter his bread. So does
everyone else who works at Microsoft. Steve and Microsoft may
also know that, somewhere down the road, Google and "cloud
computing" threaten these products, but there's a difference
between knowing that a competitor might eventually disrupt
your business and actively disrupting it yourself.
"Put differently, there is a fundamental difference between
the way Google and Microsoft approach the Internet:
" * Google wants to use the Internet to build a huge business
(and, in the process, kill Microsoft--a mission that may end up
becoming an Ahab-like obsession)
" * Microsoft wants to use the Internet to protect its already
huge Windows and Office businesses.
"One strategy is offensive, the other defensive. At Google, every
exciting new idea that undermines Microsoft's core business will
be rushed into production. At Microsoft, every exciting new idea
that undermines Microsoft's core business will be killed (or, at
least, delayed). "