Google CEO Larry Page: Facebook 'Is Doing A Really Bad Job On Their Products'

larry page mark zuckerberg

Photo: Getty Images / Justin Sullivan

For a guy who’s always talking about how he’s not concerned with the competition, Google CEO Larry Page sure ripped into one yesterday.In an excellent interview with Wired’s Steven Levy, he said that Facebook is “a company that’s strong in their space,” but is “doing a really bad job on their products.” 

He’s got a point.

Two days ago, we noted that Facebook has a bad habit of making a big deal about launching products that come out half-baked, and never really take over the world. 

Our list of examples from that post:

  • Facebook PR invited lots of press to launch of Facebook Places a couple years ago. VP of product Chris Coxgave a very emotional speech. The product was basically a stripped down version of Foursquare, but without the game-mechanics, badges, or restaurant recommendations. Do you ever useFacebook Places to check-in to a restaurant?
  • Facebook Offers was a Facebook’s Groupon-killer – sort of. Despite a big announcement, Facebook never really rolled it out across the country, and eventually shut the whole project down.
  • Facebook Email. Facebook hosted a big event to roll out its email killer. But the product lacked standard Web email features users can get with Gmail, Yahoo Mail, and lots of other places. When’s the last time you sent someone with an address an email? Have you ever?

Here is Page’s exact quote:

Wired: One area where people say that Google is indeed motivated by competition is the social realm, where in the past two years you have been working hard in a field dominated by a single rival, Facebook. That’s not the case?

Page: It’s not the way I think about it. We had real issues with how our users shared information, how they expressed their identity, and so on. And, yeah, they’re a company that’s strong in that space. But they’re also doing a really bad job on their products.

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