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November 1, 2006 / jnolen

Jotspot acquired (for real, this time)

I just wanted to offer my congratulations to the crew at JotSpot. They've worked hard, built a great product, and they deserve this success. It helps that they have every Jotspotter I have met or corresponded with has been universally friendly and gracious. Well done.

Having Google enter the wiki market directly is going to be interesting. It will certainly push the knowledge, acceptance and adoption of wikis further and faster. JotSpot as a free service is going to make life more difficult for the other hosted wikis. But on the other hand, Blogger is free and yet WordPress and TypePad are still thriving products. I feel there is still room for competition here, but if I were one of the other hosted wikis, I would definitely be concerned. Of course, Yahoo! is still out there, waiting to purchase someone.

The enterprise side of things is much more difficult to divine, especially since Google's enterprise strategy is so embryonic. But this post from Scott McMullan seems portentous:

From Gmail and Google Calendar to Google Docs & Spreadsheets, Google is pushing the envelope of web apps big time. Joining this product family brings new and exciting opportunities to put JotSpot to work both as a wiki and as a collaboration platform.

Those products (plus GTalk) well-integrated would be an impressive Office 2.0 offering. But integrating them well is going to be a real challenge. And we're still left with the question of how Google is going to monetize their enterprise strategy. The business model they choose, and what they ultimately decided about the installed vs. appliance vs. hosted debate, will obviously have a huge impact on how this plays out.

I think the Google/Writely acquisition is probably a good model to examine. They were acquired in March '06, The reopened user registrations in August '06. They started using Google Account Sign-in in September '06. Jotspot will likely be consumed with the technical transition for a similar amount of time. After that, past experience with Google leads me to believe that Google/JotSpot will be going to be focusing on the consumer/SOHO market for the immediate future. But who knows. The Jotspotters who posted about the deal all seem very excited about the big plans they can't tell us about. I wonder what they are….


Zoli has some useful insights on the deal.

So does David Berlind.

Brady Forrest's post on O'Reilley Radar is also worthwhile.


  1. Steve Smith / Nov 1 2006 8:39 am

    Well, according to this article it doesn’t matter if their other ventures are successful or not, as anything that drives people to their primary business (which is advertising, based on their search platform) is to their advantage. So it doesn’t matter if they can monetize their cool toys, as long as they are cool.

  2. Central Desktop Blog / Nov 1 2006 9:05 pm

    Central Desktop’s Take On Google Acquiring Jotspot on Halloween

    In light of Google’s acquisition of Jotspot today, Central Desktop has decided to list the company assets on eBay tomorrow …

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