Sundar Pichai reveals Google’s plan for India

Sundar Pichai sees Google’s future in its oldest offering: internet search.

Free and open internet has helped connect the world and create opportunities.

While many other technology behemoths see the metaverse as the next frontier of growth, Sundar Pichai sees Google’s future in its most traditional offering: internet search.

Pichai stated at the HT Leadership Summit 2021 that Google remains committed to playing a strong enabling role in supporting the growth of the Indian market through various efforts across cloud, AI, and Android.

“I feel fortunate our mission is timeless,” Pichai, who is chief executive officer of Google and its parent, Alphabet Inc., said in an interview during the Bloomberg New Economy Forum in Singapore. “There’s more need to organize information than ever before.”

Alphabet’s market value briefly surpassed $2 trillion earlier this month as a result of sales and profit growth during the pandemic. Pichai pointed to his company’s core service when asked where the next trillion would come from. He predicts that users will ask computers more questions using voice and “multimodal experiences.” “Being able to adapt to all of that and evolve search will continue to be the most exciting opportunity,” said the CEO.

Pichai has pushed Google deeper into cloud computing and artificial intelligence since taking over in 2015, despite increased regulatory scrutiny. During the interview, Pichai listed Google’s key growth businesses — cloud, YouTube video service, and app store — and stated that AI investments were “underlying” each of them.

The India-born executive also stated that he expects more Google products to be developed and tested in Asia before being rolled out globally. But not in China. Following an employee revolt, Google cancelled plans to bring search to mainland China in 2018. Since then, the company has kept most of its services out of the world’s most populous country. “I don’t think that’s going to change,” Pichai said. However, he does not share other Silicon Valley executives’ pessimistic view of China’s technological advances. Pichai acknowledged that Google is “neck and neck” with Chinese companies in AI and quantum computing, but argued that the US and China can collaborate on issues such as climate change and AI safety.

“It’s an exciting time in India. For us, we want to help in a few ways. Last year, we committed $10 billion to the India Digitisation Fund and as part of that, we want to support companies in India, solving newer things, we want to provide them with AI and technologies and platforms so that they can scale up their ideas and reach more users,” he said.

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