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Best Brands, Innovative Products 104

conq writes "BusinessWeek just came out with its best global brands list. The list is quite similar to last year's with Coke topping it. The brand with the highest growth year over year: Google. The comment: 'Its recent inclusion as a verb in the Oxford English Dictionary confirms what competitors feared: Google means search to an army of Web users.'" I thought this tied in nicely to tappytibbins' story. They write " has posted a feature with their picks of the 25 most innovative PC products of the last 25 years. Their #1 pick is a bit uninspired: The IBM PC. Down at #8 is the Mac. And is Apache really more of an innovation than Linux?" From that article: "15 - Palm Pilot: With an almost Zen-like minimalism of both software and hardware complexity, the Palm Pilot was no more than users needed?and exactly what many wanted."
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Best Brands, Innovative Products

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  • Google's Brand (Score:5, Insightful)

    by LaNMaN2000 ( 173615 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @07:37PM (#15802960) Homepage
    I am very surprised to see Google mentioned as a company with a strong brand. While they are the market leader in search, their brand value is minimal with respect to the myriad of other services that they have launched. Yahoo seems to have a much stronger brand as indicated by its ability to establish top 5 contenders in markets as disperate as online dating, business/finance, e-mail, etc. under the Yahoo brand. While Google has a strong reputation in search, its ability to attract people to other services under the Google brand has been lackluster at best.
  • Re:Google's Brand (Score:5, Insightful)

    by loteck ( 533317 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @07:44PM (#15802991) Homepage
    Nobody I know ever says that they "Yahooed it".

    I think it's a pretty strong indication of brand value when the name of your company becomes a commonly used verb in the english language. []

  • by slimjim8094 ( 941042 ) <> on Friday July 28, 2006 @07:55PM (#15803036)
    What is their metric? How are they measuring this? Best is a subjective term, you know.

    What if I think that Linux is more influental than Apache. Am I now wrong because Buisness Weekly says otherwise? I thought these were opinions. You know, use what you think is best, which is influenced by the job at hand...

    If these just are opinions (or even surveys of opinions), do we need them? And, better yet, do we need them on /., where everybody has their own opinion on best stuff?
  • Linksys by Cisco (Score:2, Insightful)

    by 7grain ( 583823 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @08:13PM (#15803101)
    From the article, regarding Cisco:

    "Cisco's decision to lead with its Linksys brand for consumers hasn't made the company a household name yet, but it's helping."

    I don't understand why Cisco doesn't push their name harder in the consumer market. They bought Linksys some time ago... so why don't the Linksys boxes say " Cisco!" on them somewhere? Just to gather geek cachet?

    Informed insight welcome.
  • Re:Google's Brand (Score:3, Insightful)

    by servognome ( 738846 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @08:21PM (#15803127)
    I think it's a pretty strong indication of brand value when the name of your company becomes a commonly used verb in the english language.

    Actually common use decreases brand value. Once people stop associating the word with the product, the value is lost. For example, when somebody mentions aspirin, do you immediately think of is as the aspirin brand, or the generic term for acetylsalicylic acid?
  • How we forget (Score:4, Insightful)

    by caseih ( 160668 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @08:32PM (#15803173)
    From the article:

    "With a brand that said 'business machine' and an open architecture that invited third-party innovation, the IBM PC transformed the IT industry."

    It seems we forget that when the PC was first introduced it was closed and proprietary. It wasn't until Compaq clean-room reverse-engineered the BIOS that the PC revolution really got started. If IBM had had their way the PC would have been locked down and controlled by IBM forever. Remember they used to call clones "IBM compatible." After Compaq started the cloning revolution, and Microsoft moved to make IBM-specific aspects of DOS irrelevant, not long after that IBM started to become less and less relevant. They no longer directed where the platform was going. By the i386, one could no longer talk about IBM-compatible. IBM tried to start over with a proprietary system (careful not to let cloning happen this time) withe Microchannel Architecure. Fortunately the market said, we'll stick with ISA, VESA-Local and PCI (even if MCA was superior at the time). Had IBM been successful in keeping the PC proprietary, I don't know what computers we would be using today. Maybe DEC alphas or Sparcstations. Or maybe we'd be paying $10000 a pop to IBM.
  • by erikvcl ( 43470 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @08:32PM (#15803175) Homepage
    I agree with you that the article is confusing "innovative" with "influential".

    The IBM PC wasn't innovative in the sense that it wasn't the first personal computer. It was, however the first computer widely accepted in business/corporate environments. It was no doubt more influential than any other computer of its time.

    The Palm Pilot was popular, influential and, quite frankly, a great product. The Netwon, which was far more innovative was expensive and had terrible handwriting recognition.

    AppleWorks was definitely innovative for its time -- and it was good for home users. For business applications, it really sucked compared to WordPerfect, Lotus 1-2-3, etc. Office was a far better piece of software and more influential.

    BTW: It's great to see support for banning MGM! We need more people like you to fight the battle.
  • NASCAR (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:00PM (#15803270)
    Some of us may joke about it, but NASCAR is becoming a huge brand in the US, particularly in the red states. Some fans will buy pretty much anything with the NASCAR logo (clothing, groceries, etc.) which is basically what brand strength is all about.
  • Apache Linux? Yes. (Score:1, Insightful)

    by Goodgerster ( 904325 ) <> on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:13PM (#15803321)
    Yes, Apache is more innovative than Linux: Linux is just a bog-standard UNIX-imitatory OS kernel (although admittedly an open-source one with the best features), while httpd is an innovatively modular and also innovatively free web server which has been probably the second most-used open-source product. And one mustn't forget non-httpd Apache projects, such as Forrest (a CMS) which is quite cool, certainly innovative in ways.
  • Re:How we forget (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Mattintosh ( 758112 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:19PM (#15803350)
    Had IBM been successful in keeping the PC proprietary, I don't know what computers we would be using today. Maybe DEC alphas or Sparcstations. Or maybe we'd be paying $10000 a pop to IBM.

    I use a Mac. The more things change, the more people still buy the same ol' "locked-in" stuff. And yet, it works so well that I don't feel like I paid too much. A lot, but not too much. Vendor lock-in isn't as bad as most paranoid /.-ers would have you believe.
  • Re:Sheesh! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by warrigal ( 780670 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:24PM (#15803362)
    There was very little innovation in the original PC. It was the result of a 12 month project and had to be designed around off-the-shelf parts and a cpu that was easy to implement, rather than one that would perform. Hence the Intel 80XX rather than the Motorola 68000. Development time for the 68000 would have taken too long.

    The PC was IBM's third try at a desktop computer. The failure of the first two was responsible for the short time allowed for the development of the third.

    64K, no floppies, no color... lame.
  • Is eWeek on crack? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Locke2005 ( 849178 ) on Friday July 28, 2006 @09:34PM (#15803396)
    XNS, which nobody uses anymore, is an "innovative PC product", but TCP/IP, which everybody uses and which predates XNS, isn't even mentioned? WTF?!?
  • Re:Google's Brand (Score:4, Insightful)

    by DrEldarion ( 114072 ) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [0791uhcsm]> on Friday July 28, 2006 @10:59PM (#15803682)
    Ah, but Google isn't a generic word for "web-search". It's a word for "web-search using Google". That's quite a distinction. People don't Google things on Yahoo.

Exceptions prove the rule, and wreck the budget. -- Miller