Google, one of the worlds largest technology giants announced multiple new launches today at its annual “Google for India” event. Let’s take a look at them one by one.
Google Maps Update
The technology giant launched a new feature in the Indian version of Google Maps for users traveling on motorbikes. The latest update, Motorcycle Mode, will also alert users in the case on any roadblock or parking related issues near their destination.
The new feature is placed alongside the earlier alternatives car, foot, public transport, and train. In order to show the Estimated Time Of Arrival (ETA,) the company is using the data collected exclusively from the riders and not the data collected from four-wheelers commuting on the road. Google is also customizing routing and voice-guided navigation for the Indian market and the update is being rolled out to the Google Maps app.
The feature seeks to help bikers in the country find the route most suitable for their vehicles. In a country like India, where a substantial chunk of the country’s workforce travels on motorbikes, launching such a service will help loads of travelers.
To give unified Google experience to Internet users on low end handsets the company also launched Google Go. The app will provide users access to multiple Google services such as Search, Voice Search, GIFs, YouTube, Translate and Maps. According to the company, there are nearly 400 million Internet users in India consuming over 4GB of data per month.
Speaking at the company’s third annual “Google for India” event, Google’s Vice President South East Asia and India Rajan Anandan said, “There are 230 million Indian language users online on Google today and 170 million of them are using our messaging service. Yet, we have over 900 million Indians who aren’t connected to Internet. Our mission is connectivity for every Indian. We’ll stay focused until every single Indian is connected.”
Android Oreo Go
Google also revealed a new operating system for low-cost smartphones, Android Oreo Go, to help improve the experience on entry level phones. Android Go will be available for any handset with 512MB to 1GB of RAM.
The new update will be available over the next few months and will have an average 15 % faster app startup time. All the preloaded apps will also be optimized to take up 50% less space on the available storage and users will also be able to store an extra 1,000 photos.
After beta testing the Files Go feature last month, It officially launched the new feature to help free up space on the phone. Files Go is pre-installed on Go edition devices and seeks to help users find files faster and share files offline with people in the vicinity.
Files Go is also equipped to create a closed network accessible only by approved smartphones and is said to be 200 times faster than Bluetooth transfers.
With multiple announcements catering specifically to the Indian market, it seems like Google is very serious about its expansion in the country. The Vice President of the Next Billion Users, Caesar Sengupta also added Google is now working on offering WiFi hotspots across Indian cities.