Google Focuses Mini Attention on Small Businesses

By | January 17, 2005

Google has produced a cut-down version of its commercial search appliance specifically targeted at small and medium sized businesses. The “Google Mini” arrives alongside an upgrade to the original Google Search Appliance.

Google Mini uses the same technology, but is limited to 50,000 documents. The hardware and software is sold exclusively online and costs $4,995.

The solution is designed to extend the strengths of Google’s Search Appliance by making internal document search available to companies of all sizes, according to Google product manager Matthew Glotzbach. “It is much easier to find a fact on the Internet using Google versus finding last quarter´s sales number on the company intranet. And this is across all types of business,” he said. “The Google Mini is enterprise search tailored to smaller and medium size businesses.”

Like Google’s Search Appliance, Google Mini indexes documents, searches the text contained inside and returns results much like Google’s popular website. It can handle 50,000 documents and works with more than 220 different file types from the obvious like HTML, PDF and Microsoft Office to the more obscure.

“Finding information has become a critical task for businesses today, and what we have done is take our search capablities inside the network so that you don´t have to be a search expert to find what you need,” said Dave Girouard, general manager, enterprise, at Google.

He told NewsFactor that the Mini version is a slimmer, more affordable product than previous iterations of the appliance for organiziations whose search demands are not as heavy as those of larger corporations.

In a related development, Google also announced a software upgrade for the Search Appliance aimed at larger enterprises. Support has been added for searches inside a corporate database , and localized administration now lets global enterprise I.T. managers deliver searches in French, Italian, German, Spanish and Japanese.

“Companies will now have more comprehensive search capabilities,” Girouard said. “We have added direct search for databases offered by Oracle , IBM , Sybase , Microsoft and MySQL, which covers nearly all of the market.”

Since its debut, the Search Appliance has been adopted by such organizations as Boeing , National Semiconductor , the U.S. Department of Education, Stanford University, and

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