August 10, 2015. Today Google announced that it was renaming itself as Alphabet.
The internet did a collective WTF! and nobody seems to understand why.
I believe this makes sense from an Antitrust perspective.
Today, google has to move cautiously to avoid getting accused of anti-competitive behaviour or using its leverage to benefit its own products. Something it is not always successful at. Microsoft learned this lesson at great cost at the hands of the EU.
If Google moves search into a child company (called Google) and makes all new product development as sister companies – critically – not under direction or control of “Google”, then they can no longer be accused of anti-competitive behaviour.
Of course, Alphabet will need to ensure some form of arms-length interaction between the sister companies. In doing so, Google (or Alphabet) can most likely avoid antitrust investigations into the future.