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Finding the Next Google

Perhaps the next Google will be a hybrid combination of two or more existing companies. For instance, a dark horse like BlackBerry (BBRY) could team up with a company such as Nokia (NOK) to compete in the growing market for less-expensive mobile devices.

If a tech titan like Oracle (ORCL) took some of its $33.7 billion and acquired companies like BBRY and NOK (which it easily could afford to do) a new contender might emerge. Stranger things have happened in the world of big technology surprises.

With ORCL's seemingly endless array of software platforms, business intelligence analytic applications, Web commerce, and industry-specific applications software products it could dominate the many millions of mobile device users who want to conduct business on the same smartphone that they chat with family and friends.

In the final analysis, the next Google may be a start-up company we've never heard of that won't be going public anytime soon. But as our imaginations run wild, consider my combination of ORCL, BBRY and NOK in a merger-marriage with a company like Yahoo! (YHOO) with its search engine expertise and legions of loyal customers and, well, you might just have the ideal recipe.

In the meantime, GOOG shares are receiving the kind of publicity and upgrades that AAPL used to receive. On Monday RBC Capital reiterated an outperform rating for GOOG and raised it price target to $950 from $840.

One lesser-known firm, Pacific Crest, and its tech analyst Evan Wilson reiterated an outperform for GOOG, and Wilson raised his price target to $980 from $820. He recently wrote that the company's reputation of having "uninspired management and [that] was unable to find success outside its core due to regulatory issues" has changed and that GOOG is now perceived as a tech leader.

It appears GOOG is "the" tech leader when it comes to its core competencies, and that makes it even harder for another company to catch it. Perhaps the next GOOG won't be doing the same things or even in the same industry.
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