Back in the day, it was news when Google used its massive home page distribution to push its new Chrome browser.
Google putting ads on its home page?! A big deal, even if they were for Google’s own products. It spoke to an ongoing creep inside the company of leveraging its position in search to help it win in other markets, and to some, it felt like a violation of Google’s own principles in the process.
Well, it’d not be fair for me to at least point out that Microsoft is now doing the same thing, using its 11 or so points of share on Bing to push IE 8, its upgraded web browser (see upper right corner)
It’s also notable that as far as I can tell, Microsoft is only showing the promotion to users of Firefox and Chrome. I can’t see the ad on Safari, my native browser, so if a colleague (thanks GB) hadn’t pointed it out, I would have missed it entirely. Wonder why Microsoft is sparing the Safari crowd?
Indications of an Apple/Microsoft detente? The plot thickens…