International brand consultant Clear has released its annual list of the most desirable brands and companies in the world. For the 2012 desirable list, the study covers 22,000 respondents in 6 countries, with 555 brands vying for the coveted top slots. But of course, we are only interested in knowing how two particular tech titans have fared on the list, Google and Apple.

So, what exactly makes a brand desirable? According to Clear, desirability is measured by the ability of a brand to do three things: provoke people to think, feel, and act. The brand should influence how you THINK by commanding respect and attention, how you FEEL by creating a strong emotional attachment, and how you ACT by being able to inspire action.

From the list, both Google and Apple had no problem commanding respect and attention from consumers. Google is seen as the brand that matters the most, while Apple is deemed as the most attractive brand.  When it comes to brands that have successfully created a strong emotional attachment, consumers see Google as the most irreplaceable brand. Apple, on the other hand, is seen as the greatest brand.

It seems that Google and Apple are on equal footing on Clear’s desirability list. Not quite. Apple swept clean the Act category by becoming the most talked about brand, the brand that people would love to use in the future, and the brand that people want to hear the most about.

What can we say? Apple does excel at creating an attractive image for every gadget it sells, a reputation gained since the introduction of the iPod (counting this century only). It wouldn’t be completely inaccurate to say that, in many cases, people buy Apple products because of the image and emotion that they convey, rather than for their specs.

What’s your view on the study? Do you think Google is irreplaceable? Do you think Apple is all gloss and hype? Sound off your comments below.