Message to Microsoft: Google's gunning for ya--again

Text ads might be the present cash cow for Google, but CEO Eric Schmidt talks up display ad opportunities, which means new competition for Redmond sooner, rather than later.

HALF MOON BAY, Calif.--What's Google's next big revenue stream? Text ads remain the cash cow for the present, but the company's future includes a big role for display advertising.

"I think the opportunity for display is pretty large because people are shifting what we think of as offline budgets to online," said CEO Eric Schmidt at Fortune's Brainstorm Tech conference here.

"The reason I say it's the next logical one--customers who buy text ads are also busy buying display ads from other sources...So, it's a big space," said Schmidt. He made his comments during the course of an interview with Fortune moderator David Kirkpatrick.

Google CEO Eric Schmidt
Google CEO Eric Schmidt Elinor Mills/CNET News

Schmidt's musings are not likely to come as any big surprise to Microsoft, but it suggests that the company will face new competition from a tough rival, sooner, rather than later.

During his brief time on stage, Schmidt offered a whirlwind round of comments about the industry and his company.

• You cannot run a company where you listen to the way Wall Street says you have to run the company.

• "We're not focused on stock price...We're focused on building a long-term institution and changing the world.

• One of the mistakes executives make is that they get bored with their core business. Our goal is to be a one-product company. It's called Google. Our idea is to have one seamless experience...and so you have to have a single brand.

• Many, many new forms of advertising are coming out. Maybe the most interesting is click-to-play ads...the testing and measurements is that people are doing it because they enjoy it.

• We select people who share our values...We don't value experience very much, which gets us into trouble sometimes.

• If you look at the history of software development, the interesting things get built by two people...There are essentially no counter examples. You could argue that maybe three is the right model. But there essentially are no examples of revolutionary products that began with 30-member teams.

• Our wireless initiative was the perfect outcome. It was the cost of a letter.

 

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