Earlier this week Google announced the launch of Google DNS. I'd like to share my two predictions for DNS in 2010.Back in 2007, James Thomas attempted to use the Web without ever touching a Google service. He was able to do it for a short while but eventually gave in. Last year I took a look at just how much Google knows about you. Today Google even knows where we are physically located.
What Google DNS will do is basically sit between your computer and the computer you want to reach. When we type in "moo.com", a computer has to translate that to computer-speak and then send us on our way to the computer that holds the moo.com files. This middle-man computer is called a DNS or domain name server.
Google says they can do DNS faster than anyone else and that since we all want to load webpages very fast, people will want to switch.
Jesse Stay says that DNS will become the new browser war and compares today's announcement to the fight between Netscape and Microsoft. Steve Rubel notes that the Google DNS is all about ads. You might be wondering why Steve says that this is an ad-play. It's simple. Using my example above with moo.com, let's say you accidentally type in "moopiet29595.com". Since there is no website at that address, the DNS server is lost out there in cyberspace. When that happens, most DNS servers will reroute you to a page that typically is a search page with search results that match the name you typed in plus ads.
OpenDNS, the popular DNS service, has a post that discusses the Google DNS launch.
Based on the Google DNS announcement, here are my top two predictions for 2010 with regards to DNS.
Google Will Own ISP DNS It's simple - most Internet providers will outsource their DNS functions to Google. I predict that this will happen by the end of June 2010. Google has the cash and will make it super sweet for the ISPs to switch. This will also help Google take the main market share for DNS. Changing your DNS servers on your computer is not that easy and most Internet users will never do it. But if Google partners with say Comcast or Time Warner, they can make the change at the server level and it will be done automatically. The ISPs get major cash, Google gets the overwhelming share of the DNS function and users never know anything changed.
For years I thought Google would acquire the big ISPs. Now they have no need to - just take over the DNS and they get control without having to deal with the other ISP operations (e.g. billing, customer service, etc.).
Microsoft Will Acquire OpenDNS If we go with Jesse's argument above that DNS will be the warzone for position next year, Microsoft will want a hand in the pot. OpenDNS won't be able to resist the bucket of cash that Microsoft will bring. At that point, Microsoft will go after the partnerships I noted above that Google will most likely make. And Jesse will be right - it will be a bloodbath.
I can't tell you whether to switch to Google DNS or not. The bottom line is that Google knows just about everything you do online already.
Is today's announcement a bad thing? I can't answer that question but my guess is that once the government gets past the health care issues, they may just come knocking. I'd love to get a reaction from the President's CTO and tech team.
If you decide to setup Google DNS, Amit has a great post with videos on how to make the switch. And if you decide to switch, leave a comment with your reasoning for switching.