Category Archives: Google India Blog

The Official Google Blog for India

Share your trips and real-time location from Google Maps

“Where are you now?” and “What's your ETA?” Whether you’re heading to a party or meeting up for dinner, you probably hear questions like this pretty often from family and friends. Soon Google Maps users worldwide will be able to answer those questions in just a few taps, without ever leaving the app. On both Android and iOS, you’ll be able to share your real-time location with anyone. And the people you share with will be able to see your location on Android, iPhone, mobile web, and even desktop. Here’s how it works in a real-world scenario:

Whenever you want to let someone know where you are, just open the side menu or tap the blue dot that represents where you are. Tap “Share location” and then select who to share with and how long to share—and you're done! You can share your real-time location with your Google contacts, or even share with friends and family by sending a link on your favorite messenger apps. When you’re sharing your location, the people you’ve chosen to share with will see you on their map. And you’ll see an icon above the compass on your own map reminding you that you’re actively sharing your location. You can change your mind and stop sharing at any time—it’s entirely up to you.
Next time you’re on your way or running late, you can share your real-time location and trip progress from navigation as well. During your next trip, tap the “More” button on the bottom on the navigation screen, and then tap “Share trip.” When you share your trip with people, they’ll see your expected arrival time and can follow your journey as you head towards your destination. Sharing automatically ends when you arrive.

Location sharing on Google Maps is rolling out worldwide over the coming week, and you’ll be able to quickly let your friends and family know where you are and when you’ll get where you’re going. The answer to “where are you?” is only a tap away.

Posted by Sanket Gupta, Program Manager, Google Maps

Now it gets easier to plan your commute with the Google Maps transit feature in seven more Indian cities

~ Transit feature is now available in sixteen Indian cities ~

Want to reach somewhere and wondering which bus to take or which bus routes go to your destination? To help you better plan your commute around the city, and make it easier for you to get an overview of public transportation around you, we are expanding the transit feature on Google Maps to seven more Indian cities including Chandigarh, Lucknow, Vadodara, Indore, Mysore, Surat and Coimbatore.

With today’s update, the transit feature is now available in sixteen Indian cities – the seven newly added cities as well as Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata, Jaipur, Hyderabad, Pune, Ahmedabad.

Google Transit is a feature on Google Maps designed to help you plan your commute with only a couple of taps. For instance, if you’re going to Sukhna Lake in Chandigarh, just search for Sukhna Lake and Google Maps will show you how to get there from your current location. We’ll now show you bus routes and stops, including details such as departure and arrival times, the names of bus stands, and even where to change buses. You can scroll through the options and tap on the one that is most convenient for you, making it easier for you to know when to leave to arrive on time. Google Transit is available on Google Maps for Android and iOS as well as through your browser.

To try out the feature, just follow these steps:
  • Open Google Maps for Mobile on your Android or iOS device
  • Enter your destination and click the "get directions" icon. If it’s not already selected, tap the "transit" icon (the little tram) to view times, bus numbers, routes and more.

Google Maps is your guide to the world around you, and this launch is part of our effort to reflect the real world and provide you with relevant information about your surroundings. Google Maps globally provides over 1 billion km worth of transit results every day and has schedules for more than 2.5 million public transit stops worldwide. Google Transit is now available for hundreds of cities across dozens of countries, with new partners joining all the time.

Posted by Sanket Gupta, Product Manager, Google Maps

Introducing Seller Ratings on Google Search: Enjoy a better online shopping experience

Whether we’re buying holiday gifts, looking for a new car, or choosing a travel agent, we turn online to search for the opinions and experiences of others to help us make purchase decisions. With the new Seller Ratings, Google can help you shop with confidence across the web.

Check a store’s rating as you search

Let’s say you’re looking to buy a new rug: you want to be able to quickly check the store’s rating and reviews as you search on Google. Seller Ratings showcase a star rating on search ads based on reviews received from users like you.

Help others by contributing your own review

Additionally, if you’re ready to buy that new rug, and the online store you’re buying from is integrated with Google Customer Reviews, you’ll have the option to share your own review with the online community. Reviews collected via Google Customer Reviews contribute to a store’s seller rating and help others along their shopping journey too.

Interested in getting a seller rating for your business?
If you run a business, integrating with Google Customer Reviews will help you earn a seller rating by collecting valuable feedback from your customers. You can follow our onboarding and integration guide to sign up for Google Customer Reviews and complete the simple setup process.

Posted by Aaron Berger and Jorge Cueto, Product Managers at Google

Welcome Kaggle to Google Cloud

Today, I’m excited to announce that Kaggle will be joining Google Cloud. Founded in 2010, Kaggle is home to the world's largest community of data scientists and machine learning enthusiasts. More than 800,000 data experts use Kaggle to explore, analyze and understand the latest updates in machine learning and data analytics. Kaggle is the best place to search and analyze public datasets, build machine learning models and grow your data science expertise.

During my keynote talk at Next ‘17, I emphasized the importance of democratizing AI. We must lower the barriers of entry to AI and make it available to the largest community of developers, users and enterprises, so they can apply it to their own unique needs. With Kaggle joining the Google Cloud team, we can accelerate this mission.

Kaggle and Google Cloud will continue to support machine learning training and deployment services, while offering the community the ability to store and query large datasets.

I’m thrilled to welcome Kaggle to the team. Kaggle and Google Cloud will foster a thriving community of machine learning developers and data scientists, giving them direct access to the most advanced cloud machine learning environment.

I can’t wait to see what machine learning problems you solve and the breakthroughs you achieve.

Posted by, Fei-Fei Li, Chief Scientist, Google Cloud AI and Machine Learning

Google Cloud and SAP forge partnership to develop enterprise solutions

Today, we’re announcing a new strategic partnership with SAP, focused on developing and integrating Google’s best cloud and machine learning solutions with SAP enterprise applications. This partnership, which includes certification of the in-memory database SAP HANA on Google Cloud Platform(GCP), new G Suite integrations, Google’s machine learning capabilities, and data governance collaboration, offers Google Cloud, SAP and our customers more scope, scalability, and the exciting opportunity to create new products.
SAP has a long history at the center of business and technology. More than 345,000 customers worldwide, including 87% of the Forbes Global 2000, work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively with SAP’s broad suite of products. With this partnership we’re offering SAP customers the opportunity to leverage Google Cloud to accelerate their digital transformation and convert data into actionable insights and business outcomes.
SAP applications in the cloud
The SAP HANA database is now certified on GCP. This certification enables customers to run mission-critical SAP applications and databases like SAP HANA on GCP through ongoing certifications and integrations. One example of this work is the accelerated availability of certain performance enhancements to ensure that GCP delivers optimal performance for SAP HANA.
The partnership also represents the start of a close engineering collaboration between SAP and Google. Google Cloud is the first public cloud vendor to make SAP HANA express edition available to developers in an on-demand deployment model. Developers can now use SAP HANA express edition to build custom enterprise applications on GCP with the flexibility of on-demand, near instantaneous deployment leveraging Google Cloud Launcher. In addition, we are also working closely with SAP to make SAP Cloud Platform available on GCP.
The SAP Cloud Platform’s Identity and Access Management (IAM) solution now supports G Suite and GCP. The integration with Google allows customers to easily and securely connect SAP with Google’s productivity suite G Suite or GCP and give access to their users to any application from any device at any time.
Machine learning for the enterprise
Machine learning is top of mind for enterprise CIOs and developers alike, and Google is leading the industry to expand access to machine learning’s benefits. Google Cloud solutions include APIs covering speech, text, image, translation and infrastructure for large-scale training and delivery of machine learning capabilities. Google and SAP intend to collaborate on building machine learning features into intelligent applications like conversational apps that guide users through complex workflows and transactions. This is just one example of how the Google Cloud and SAP partnership will enable digital business transformation using the power of machine learning, with deeper technology integrations to come.
Integrations in productivity apps
Google Cloud and SAP will drive greater integration across joint applications. These integrations will enable seamless experiences such as the combination of Gmail with SAP Cloud for Customer, a CRM solution that allow users to link email conversations, search for duplicate contacts and creating new leads, opportunities, tasks and visits directly from Gmail. Other integrations include Calendar with Concur Tripit, and Sheets with SAP BusinessObjects Cloud. Colgate-Palmolive, a long-standing SAP customer, is already seeing the benefits of the combined strength of G Suite and SAP.
Colgate-Palmolive has a focused IT strategy that relies on a small number of strategic partners, including SAP and Google Cloud. Colgate chose to partner with SAP and Google Cloud because both are innovative and approach work collaboratively. They've been working with SAP for 23 years and moved all employees to G Suite suite in 2016 (about 28,000 people globally). The implementation took only six months and, after only three months, they’re already working differently, collaborating more easily.
Colgate gets tremendous value from the work they do with Google and SAP, individually. They’re excited about the numerous opportunities ahead given a tighter Google / SAP partnership. Examples include combining Google’s machine learning with SAP’s business process expertise as well as integrating SAP’s Digital Boardroom, a co-innovation between SAP and Colgate, with Google Slides.
Greater visibility and control
Enterprise customers moving from on-premise to public cloud environments wish to retain insight and control over the access to their sensitive data, while at the same time benefiting from the agility, scale and global presence of a public cloud platform. GCP provides a rich set of capabilities around access control, auditing and encryption key management to enable customers to defend against external attacks and manage insider access risk.
We're now working with SAP to develop a governance, risk management and compliance solution that provides visibility and control over how data is handled on GCP, including how administrative access is granted by the cloud provider. For customers desiring an independent entity overseeing the handling of their data on a public cloud, SAP plans to act as a data custodian for their data on Google Cloud Platform.
We look forward to all the ways we can bring the innovation, scale and reliability of Google Cloud to the already invaluable tools SAP provides to hundreds of thousands businesses around the world
Posted by Nan Boden, Head of Global Technology Partners, Google Cloud

Announcing Google SMB Heroes 2017 – Celebrating the heroes of Digital India

With 400 million Indians users on the internet and 300 million using smartphones, Indians have wholeheartedly embraced digital to find information and make decisions. This also opens up a large opportunity for small and medium businesses to engage these users to accelerate their growth. However, only 32% of Indian SMBs are leveraging the power of digital today.1

Recognising the need to skill these businesses and support their journey to digital, earlier this year, we announced a large scale training program - Digital Unlocked. Through this program, we aim to make quality digital training available to every single small business in India that wants it. We also launched Primer, a free mobile app designed to teach digital marketing skills in a quick, easy and interactive way.

Continuing with our commitment to partner with India’s small and medium businesses, today I am excited to announce SMB Heroes. SMB Heroes is a nationwide program designed to recognize and celebrate SMBs that have embraced digital successfully. The program comprises three categories - Business Innovation through Digital, Impacting Change through Digital and Woman Business Leader. Starting today and until April 24, businesses from across the country can submit their nominations on the SMB Heroes website - Following this, one  winner from each category will be shortlisted for five major zones, culminating in a national finale in Delhi later this year.

We are enthused about the opportunity to celebrate the amazing work that many Indian businesses are already doing, as well as the ability to provide a roadmap for other businesses to learn and chart their own path to success.

Posted by Shalini Girish, Director - Google Marketing Solutions, Google India

You know what’s cool? A billion hours.

[Cross posted from the Official YouTube blog]

A few years back, we made a big decision at YouTube. While everyone seemed focused on how many views a video got, we thought the amount of time someone spent watching a video was a better way to understand whether a viewer really enjoyed it. It wasn’t an easy call, but we thought it would help us make YouTube a more engaging place for creators and fans. And last year, we hit a big milestone on that journey: people around the world are now watching a billion hours of YouTube’s incredible content every single day!

Let’s put that in perspective. If you were to sit and watch a billion hours of YouTube, it would take you over 100,000 years. 100,000 years ago, our ancestors were crafting stone tools and migrating out of Africa while mammoths and mastodons roamed the Earth. If you spent 100,000 years traveling at the speed of light, you could travel from one end of the Milky Way to the other (and you wouldn’t age a day!). And if you searched for 100,000 years on YouTube, you’d find a really killer KISS track.

That’s the great thing about this milestone. It represents the enjoyment of the fantastically diverse videos that creative people make every single day. Around the world, people are spending a billion hours every day rewarding their curiosity, discovering great music, keeping up with the news, connecting with their favorite personalities, or catching up with the latest trend.

We’ve worked hard behind the scenes to make that billion-hour journey possible, but this isn’t just our milestone. It belongs to all of you, too—the global audience that tunes in every day and the creators whose videos have made YouTube the original, surprising and limitless source of entertainment it is. From all of us here at YouTube, please accept our heartfelt thanks.

Posted by Cristos Goodrow, VP of engineering at YouTube, recently watched “Secret Billionaire: The Chuck Feeney Story.”

Partnering toward the next generation of mobile networks

[Cross posted from the Official Google Blog]

Over the years, we’ve built and managed networking infrastructure to help us provide Google services to people around the world. Our infrastructure spans many areas, from the fabric that binds together servers within our data centers, to the backbone network that links these data centers, to our edge nodes which hundreds of network operators deploy to deliver our services efficiently. Across all of these, we’ve relied on common design and operational principles, such as the use of software defined networking (SDN), network function virtualization and site reliability engineering, to help us deliver our services reliably.

As people increasingly access the Internet through their mobile devices, mobile operators are now designing their next-generation networks based on many of the same principles that we’ve adopted to power our own networking infrastructure. To support our partners as they roll out these networks, we’re working on a number of initiatives that we’re excited to share progress on today.

We’re announcing that we’re partnering with leading mobile network operators globally, including Bharti Airtel and SK Telecom, and building a platform for operators to run their network services. This platform brings to partners a set of powerful building blocks that we have developed over time. Our SDN framework enables networks to adapt to new services and traffic patterns. Fast user space packet processing on commodity hardware increases the ability to deliver new features quickly while reducing costs. And simplified workflow management and automated testing help quickly launch and iterate on new features. This platform also builds on our existing efforts to jointly experiment with mobile operators on richer APIs. These APIs will enable new operational models and help operators bring new features (such as Smart Offline) to people.
We want to bring the benefits of this platform to as many people as possible. So, in addition to partnering with more operators for this platform, we’re also bringing our design and operational experience to CORDa vibrant open-source project with active participation from leading mobile ecosystem partners.

There’s a lot more to come as we continue to partner with operators on their next generation networks.

Posted by Ankur Jain, Principal Engineer

Keep track of your favorite places and share them with friends

Is your bucket list etched in your memory, or scribbled on a dozen post-it notes scattered around your home? Have you ever promised out-of-town guests an email full of your favorite spots, only to never get around to clicking send? Starting today, you can create lists of places, share your lists with others, and follow the lists your friends and family share with you—without ever leaving the Google Maps app (Android, iOS).

Getting started is easy. Simply open the Google Maps app and find that ‘Chaat’ spot you’ve been wanting to try. Tapping on the place name and then the “Save” icon adds the place to one of several pre-set lists like “Want to Go” or “Favorites.” You can also add the restaurant to a new list that you name yourself, like “Mouth Watering Chaat.” To recall the lists you’ve created, go to Your Places (in the side menu) and then open the saved tab. Icons for the places you’ve saved to lists will appear on the map itself, so you’ll always know whether one of your must-try Chaat spots is nearby.

Because sharing is caring, we made it easy to share lists like “Best Views in Mumbai or Best restaurants in Bangalore or ten must street food places in Delhi” via text, email, social networks and popular messaging apps. Whenever friends and family come to town, tap the share button to get a link and start flexing your local knowledge muscles. Once you send a link to your out-of-towners, they can tap “Follow” to pull up the list from Your Places whenever they need it. Here’s how it all works in real life:

The lists you follow are with you wherever you take Google Maps and are viewable on mobile and desktop—and even offline. Next time you're on a trip, download offline maps of the area in advance and you'll be able to see all the places you’ve added to lists on the map itself.

With the millions of landmarks, businesses and other points of interest in Google Maps, there’s no shortage of places to try. Now that we’ve got the world mapped, it’s your turn to map your world with Lists—from local hotspots to bucket list destinations worlds away.

Posted by Sanket Gupta, Program Manager, Google Maps

Experience virtual reality on the web with Chrome

Virtual reality (VR) lets you tour the Turkish palace featured in “Die Another Day,” learn about life in a Syrian refugee camp firsthand, and walk through your dream home right from your living room. With the latest version of Chrome, we’re bringing VR to the web—making it as easy to step inside Air Force One as it is to access your favorite webpage.
For a fully immersive experience, use Chrome with your Daydream-ready phone and Daydream View—just browse to a VR experience you want to view, choose to enter VR, and put the phone in your Daydream View headset. If you don’t have a headset you can view VR content on any phone or desktop computer and interact using your finger or mouse.
You can already try out some great VR-enabled sites, with more coming soon. For example, explore the intersection of humans, nature and technology in the interactive documentary Bear 71. Questioning how we see the world through the lens of technology, this story blurs the lines between the wild world and the wired one.

Tour Matterport’s library of 300,000+ celebrity homes, museums, canyons, iconic architecture and other real places.

Watch more than two dozen award-winning VR films with Within—from gripping tales set in worlds of pure imagination to documentaries taking you further inside the news than ever before.

 Discover​ more than a million stunning 3D scenes in VR with Sketchfab, from your favorite anime and video game characters to famous works of art. Join the community and contribute your own creations, or just enjoy and share your favorites.
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Experiment and play in the WebVR Lab from PlayCanvas. Try teleporting around the space or playing a record with your Daydream controller.

We want to bring VR to everyone on any device, and in the coming months we’ll add support for more headsets, including Google Cardboard. Try out these VR-enabled sites to be one of the first to experience the magic of VR on the web.

Posted by, Megan Lindsay, Product Manager and collector of VR headsets, Chrome