Is it possible to be truly successful without a little friendly competition? Maybe, according to Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) CEO Larry Page in a recent interview with Wired. “It’s hard to find actual examples of really amazing things that happened solely due to competition,” says Page. “How exciting is it to come to work if the best you can do is trounce some other company that does roughly the same thing? That’s why most companies decay slowly over time. They tend to do approximately what they did before, with a few minor changes.”
Regardless, Page did have a few opinions to share about primary competitor Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) as well as social networking behemoth Facebook (NASDAQ:FB). He insists that innovation is the true key to tech greatness, not incremental updates to already-existing products. “You may say that Apple only does a very, very small number of things, and that’s working pretty well for them. But I find that unsatisfying,” Page explains. “It’s natural for people to want to work on things that they know aren’t going to fail. But incremental improvement is guaranteed to be obsolete over time… If you’re not doing some things that are crazy, then you’re doing the wrong things.”
Gmail, for example, was a giant leap for what was once an exclusively search engine-oriented company. And Google X is the company’s famously hush-hush laboratory rumored to be working on everything from a self-driving car to augmented reality glasses.