OneBox and Google Maps Navigation Get Show on Road
Not content on dominating online search, advertising and video streaming, internet behemoth Google has set its mind to taking on both satellite navigation and online music in the same week!
Google OneBox made its US debut with an alliance with MySpace’s iLike and Lala music sites. The service will be a meld of music streaming and online store, taking the best bits of Spotify and iTunes and putting Google’s considerable weight of online experience and resource behind it.
Apple currently hold the most significant share of the online music market with 70 per cent of legal downloads online. Streaming company Spotify started to gain significant traction last year and has since gained some two million users in the UK and six million users across European countries.
Customers will be able to search on OneBox for songs, album titles, artists or snatches of lyrics in order to find the music they are after and then listen to the song streamed live through their machine or download it to their MP3 player. OneBox is perhaps the last hope of a genuine contender to challenge Apple’s authority on the music marketplace, after Microsoft’s Zune has withered into insignificance.
As if that weren’t enough, Google also announced yesterday the release of its free sat nav system, Google Maps Navigation. The GPS turn-by-turn system is outstanding, not only rivalling the current market leaders at their own game, but also introducing Google twists like giving customers the option to use their navigation in conjunction with Street View.
Mashable reported that Garmin’s share price fell by 16.4 per cent, and TomTom’s shares fell by 20.8 per cent in a day, that’s how significant Google’s intervention in the market is. Blogger Stan Schroeder said the system was “one of those Google products that change the landscape of an entire industry,” and with such presence behind the Google beta teams, can anything stop online’s irresistible force?