Posted April 20, 2007 9:14 am by with 18 comments

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There’s just no stopping Google. Seriously, if you’ve bought into the idea that Google is not a threat to your business, it’s time to re-evaluate that position.

Why so? Google has just announced their acquisition of Marratech, a video conferencing and collaboration company, which will now see them compete with the likes of WebEx.

Here’s how it works…

  • Works on Mac, Windows and Linux.
  • Runs on existing PC’s and Laptops – no additional capital expenditure.
  • Have a private ‘one-to-one’ conversation with any participant
  • Share any application and hand control to another user.
  • All participants can record and playback the entire net meeting including voice, video and whiteboard.
  • It’s easy to include office group meetings or video conferences in a Marratech video net e-meeting.
  • Call remote people into the video net meeting even if they are away from a computer.
  • It does all this over highspeed broadband internet without the need to use a telephone.
  • End-to-end encryption ensures security for your entire net meeting including voice, video and documents .
  • You can present or ‘broadcast’ to an unlimited audience.
  • Marratech’s licensed Manager works on Mac, Linux, Windows and Solaris servers.
  • Marratech Manager offers quick installation, upgrades and administration features for fast and easy configuration.

And here’s how it looks…


And here’s what Google has planned…

As a company, we thrive on casual interactions and spontaneous collaboration. So we’re excited about acquiring Marratech’s video conferencing software, which will enable from-the-desktop participation for Googlers in videoconference meetings wherever there’s an Internet connection.

And here’s why you should be concerned. First, there goes any chance that I’ll renew a subscription with GoToMeeting or sign-up for WebEx. Why? I already use GTalk, GMail and a host of other Google services. If they re-launch this with integration to existing Google services AND make the service free, why would I want anything else?

That’s exactly why Google is making acquisitions that, at first glance, don’t look like they fit within the companies mission to organize the world’s information. But look harder, and you’ll see that it’s building a suite of online services that will keep you glued to the Google brand. When it’s bringing in $1b+ per quarter in search revenue, it can afford to give these services away for free.

If your business has any kind of online service, you should prepare your Google contingency plan, and pray that you never have to use it!


  • Marratech is totally cross-platform on the client and the server side. Marratech runs on OS X, Windows, and Linux and is based on Java. You do have to download a client, but using their java web start you can download the client onto a machine in the background from just clicking on a web link to join an online meeting.

    We have been using Marratech for over 4 yeares in a state-wide educational network. I have worked with web and video conferencing for many years and have tested mostly everything. Marratech is a top of the line product and bests WebEX on several levels.

    Google has made a good purchase here and I think you will see them leverage this, not only use it internally. Google uses a lot of Tandberg video endpoints and Marratech can connect to these with ease. It is one of the few products that bridges between video H.323 and web conferencing.

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  • I would like to invite you to a post from where you can access a Fickr collection with several screen captures made while using the excellent Marratech software.

    The post is dated April 22, and my blog is at

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  • Is there something else what wasnt acquiered by Google? That looks like they are going to own Internet already.

  • Marratech does multicast on enabled networks. Multicast is not done over the Internet! Also Marratech can be easily setup with multiple nodes with servers enabled in various locations for better thru-put for heavy use.

  • Wayne Kerr

    The current Marratech is a dead technology it will not evolve – see this official post on Marratech:

    Google will be working with the brains behind Marratech to create something completely different for Google. Wait for what Google comes up with – hopefully it will be free too!

  • Thanks Wayne!

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  • Google has made a good purchase here and I think you will see them leverage this, not only use it internally.

  • Sammy

    But even after over an year its not able to make that impact in Webex territory. Anycase the way they function its looks like they are after a very complete all-in-one “business solution” package. We have for all kinda conferencing needs and am not interested in replacing it for either Webex or Google’s marrtech. Still the way google heading it looks like they are for an acquisition of a web-based project management company in the near future.

  • Video Conferencing has since this article become very affordable. If you are looking to video conference with 2 or more people and collaborate on documents and other material, is a phenomenal product. They have even provided a high quality affordable solution (best on the market IMHO) for webinars that makes gotomeeting look like it is in the stone ages. It incorporates all the key webinar features plus many very unique. Definitely worth a look.

  • I have read this post. This is very much true. Even I own a blog account on video conferencing. Video conferencing is indeed a great innovation in technology and communications. One day video conferencing will be like an ordinary house-hold item in the next 5-10 years.I will mention your post in my blog.

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  • Initially the concept of video conferencing was new to me but due to the change in technologies I felt that work and the performance of business can be effectively be increased positively due to the investment I made in more than one telepresence room. However, many telepresence solutions are now standards based, so they are compatible with other desktop.

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