The Google for India virtual conference took place on Monday, and arguably the announcement that received the most attention was Google’s decision to pump in a whopping $10 billion (₹75,000 crores) in the nation, among other statements.
According to the announcement, Alphabet Inc.’s Google will pump in the whopping sum of money in India through different modes of investment in a course of five to seven years.
The announcement from Google comes shortly after Foxconn, Apple’s largest manufacturer of iPhones, announced they’ll be injection $1 billion in India, and the move was reported to be a push from Apple which has been mulling ways to recede activity in China.
“Through it, we’ll invest $10 billion into India over the next five-seven years,” Google CEO Sundar Pichai said in the annual “Google for India” event. Detailing the mode of investment, Pichai said the search engine giant will push the money in India through what they’re calling a ‘digitization fund.’
“We’ll do this through a mix of equity investments, partnerships, and operational infrastructure in ecosystem investments”, Pichai said. “This is a reflection of our confidence in the future of India and its digital economy.”
Googles annual meeting was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and both Modi and Pichai discussed the importance of digital intervention to benefit India’s farmers, youth, and entrepreneurs, more so in the post-COVID days. Prime Minister Narendra Modi detailed his meeting on Twitter:
During our interaction, @sundarpichai and I spoke about the new work culture that is emerging in the times of COVID-19. We discussed the challenges the global pandemic has brought to areas such as sports. We also talked about the importance of data security and cyber safety.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) July 13, 2020
Thank you for your time, PM @narendramodi – very optimistic about your vision for Digital India and excited to continue our work towards it. Later today we’ll share our next steps on that journey at #GoogleForIndia.— Sundar Pichai (@sundarpichai) July 13, 2020
Sundar Pichai told Reuters that apart from investment in India, Google will also focus on education and artificial intelligence.
Google also announced it will train more than one million teachers from 22,000 schools in India to leverage digital technology while imparting knowledge along with traditional classroom learning, in partnership with CBSE, Skill Education, and Training.
Google is the largest search engine in the world and the official developer of the Android operating system, the world’s largest and most popular mobile OS, and roughly used by 2.5 billion users as of 2019, a share perhaps no other operating system has.
As of June 2020, India’s market share for Android stands at 95.07% making it Google’s largest market in the world. While Apple holds only a fraction of the Indian market with a little over three percent market share, according to StatCounter data.
Google joins the tech giants Facebook, and Amazon both of which have heavily invested in India this year alone. Amazon has already invested $5 billion to digitally boost the nation’s small and medium scale businesses. While Facebook has announced an investment of $5.7 billion in Reliance Jio, according to reports.
(Cover image courtesy of @satyakumar_y via Twitter)