I mostly think it’s a publication doing what it needs to do to drive traffic. When they say:
“The scope of Alphabet’s ambition for the Google brand is clear: It wants Google’s information organizing brain to be embedded right at the domestic center — i.e. where it’s all but impossible for consumers not to feed it with a steady stream of highly personal data.”
What they’re really saying is that Google, like Apple, has finally started to create an all-encompassing eco-system that seamlessly integrates all it’s products to make the experience better. They’re not quite at the level Apple is at, but they’re taking steps in that direction every day and that’s awesome.
The reason it’s so much more controversial is because of the fact that Google is data driven. Apple does the same thing (in terms of collecting data), but since they’re design driven, people don’t feel as threatened because they just don’t know.. but it’s all the same.