28 March 2012 – Google Apps for Business announced today new features for data archiving, retention policies, and litigation holds of email and instant messaging. Analysts said the move was on par with its rival Microsoft whose product Office 365 has had similar features since its launch in summer 2011. For the official announcement from Google click here.
The announcement from Google is no big surprise. And it is much more than the presence of Mira Edelman, Discovery Counsel for Google, at LegalTech 2012 this past February. Google had made clear it had set its sights on the e-discovery market (see our post last year), emphasized even more this year at MWC2012. When they scooped up Jack Halprin, Autonomy’s ex-vice president for e-discovery and compliance, the direction was set. As we said last year, Eric Schmidt and Larry Page have always emphasized that Google will get in — and hopefully dominate (anti-trust alert!!) — every aspect of search, and the phrase “information governance” was used extensively at last year’s developers’ conference Google I/O 2011 as well as the numerous “unconference” events we have attended. Larry Page loves to talk about new technologies that require scalability, simple interface, and complex search technology organically developed, handling any amount of data — massive amounts of data. Like e-discovery technology.
As we said last year in the post cited above, when Google released that famous database of 500 billion words published in 5.2 million books over two centuries, and then applied its “culturomics” and text analytics that analyzed trends, provided quantative and qualitative analysis … bang, you knew what was coming.
And we are reminded of what Nick Patience told us last year at one of the 451 Research conferences (before he jumped to Recommind): as the e-discovery market matures it is only a matter of time until the “goliaths” come to dominate it. EMC, Hitachi, IBM, Symantec. They are all building their share.