The country is seen as one of the most important markets for international tech companies to gain a foothold in due to its massive population and economic growth prospects for the rest of this century. With that in mind, Google has just announced or released a slew of new software and services aimed at making headwinds into the country. Among them:
- Android Oreo (Go edition): a lightweight version of the latest Android software that aims to allow low cost, entry-level Android devices, which are popular in India, access to many of the latest features of Oreo without slowing down their phones.
- Google Go: a lightweight search app that only takes up 5MB of space on a user’s phone. The app allows users who may be new to the internet to search for information more easily. The app is also light on data, making it ideal for slower connections.
- Files Go: an app that allows users to quickly find files to share or free up space on their devices.
- Google Assistant for the JioPhone: the JioPhone is a popular 4G feature phone sold in India that runs KaiOS (an OS based on Firefox OS). Google Assistant for the JioPhone bring’s Google’s popular Assistant software to the JioPhone, which allows them to not only use voice controls to search online, but to make phone calls and send texts messages, as well as interact with the JioPhone in other ways.
- Google Maps “two-wheeler mode”: India has the largest number of motorcycle and scooter riders in the world. Now Google is catering to those two-wheeled drivers by hishlighting navigation routes that are available to two-wheeled vehicles because of their size. Think of this a shortcut directions for motorcycles because they can squeeze through places cars can’t.
- Tez bill pay improvements: Tex is Google’s mobile payments solution for India. In the coming weeks Google will roll out UI and UX changes to make it even easier for people to pay their bills right in the app. Google says the rollout will launch with more than 70 billers supported, including utilities and direct-to-home service providers.