New Delhi , Sep 27 : Search engine giant at the second edition of its signature Google for India event has announced five new products that are adapted for and aimed at expanding access to the Internet for users in India.
Amongst the products built specifically for Indian consumers, there are YouTube Go, the Google Assistant in Hindi inside messaging app Allo, faster browsing for Google Play on 2G connections as well as new global platforms inspired by the needs of Indian users 'The Google Station Wi-Fi platform' and new data-saving features in Google Chrome for mobile.
"Our goal has not just been to help more Indians get online but also to help Indians create the online experience they want; one that serves their needs and enables them to have an impact on the entire world. So we have been thinking about how to build products and services for this wave of new users products that work for any level of connectivity, in local Indian languages, and across the devices that are most frequently used in India," said Vice-President, Caesar Sengupta.
The event also saw John Giannandrea, Senior Vice-President, Engineering who looks after Search; Johanna Wright, Vice-President YouTube and Rahul Roy-Chowdhury, Vice-President Chrome and RajanAnandan, Vice-President, South East Asia and India in attendance.
Inspired by the success of the partnership with RailTel and Indian Railways to provide Wi-Fi at railway stations in India with 50+ stations now providing high-quality Internet to 3.5 million people each month, Caesar Sengupta announced a new Wi-Fi platform called Google Station.
The new platform will work with partners to roll out Wi-Fi hotspots, offering carriers, system integrators (SIs), and venues an easy way to set up high-quality, user-friendly Wi-Fi. This will provide more people in India and around the world fast, reliable, and safe Wi-Fi in more of the places where they spend time, like malls, transit stations, and cafes.
Sengupta also announced fast browsing in Google Play for people on 2G and other low-bandwidth connections. Fast browsing uses preloading on Wi-Fi to load the most popular parts of Google Play quickly. And when a user on a low-bandwidth connection chooses to install an app, Google Play will offer a new Wait for Wi-Fi option where the app will only install when the phone next connects to Wi-Fi.
Rahul Roy-Chowdhury, Vice-President, Product Management, Chrome announced a group of tailored features for Chrome that make the web a better place for mobile users facing data constraints. Data Saver mode, which reduces the amount of data Chrome uses on Android mobile devices, computers, and Chromebooks will now support MP4 videos, saving up to over two-thirds (67 percent) of video data. Chrome on Android will now also automatically optimize pages to their essentials when 2G-like networks are detected. These simplified pages load up to 2X faster, saving more than 90 percent of data usage.
RajanAnandan, Vice-President, India and South East Asia, set the agenda at the start of the event by outlining all of the efforts by Google to give all Indians access to the Internet. He talked through initiatives that have happened in India since the last Google for India event in December 2015, including the success of its Wi-Fi offering in partnership with Railtel and its efforts to overcome the gender divide by training women across rural India on how to access and use the Internet. In partnership with Tata Trusts, Google has already trained over a million women across ten states.
Anandan also talked about the plans to train two million mobile developers on Android, revealing that over 120,000 students have already enrolled in the Android Fundamentals course, and by next college semester, 200,000 engineering students will be learning how to develop Android applications. Google is also funding the installation of Google Developers Codelabs at major State Technical Universities in India.