Category Archives: Google India Blog

The Official Google Blog for India

Announcing the 10 startups that will take the stage at Demo Day Asia

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After our open call for startups to apply and pitch to top global investors at Demo Day Asia—taking place this September in Shanghai—we received hundreds of submissions. They came from founders from every corner of Asia-Pacific, across industries as diverse as agriculture, entertainment, and healthcare.
While difficult to narrow down this impressive field, after painstaking deliberation, the results are finally in. Out of 305 qualifying applications, the 10 finalists that will take the final stage at Demo Day Asia are... (drum-roll!):

/ SigTuple from India creates AI-based solutions to automate healthcare screening.
/ DycodeX from Indonesia develops Internet of Things solutions for livestock farming.
/ FreightExchange from Australia is an online platform for freight carriers to sell their unused space to shippers.
/ GITAI from Japan specializes in building robots that can help humans conduct scientific experiments in space.
/ Marham from Pakistan is a healthcare platform that helps people search, book appointments, and consult with doctors online.
/ Miotech from China is a fintech startup developing artificial intelligence-based software for financial services firms.
/ OneStockHome from Thailand offers an e-commerce platform for construction materials.
/ Origami Labs from Hong Kong makes smart rings that allow people to hear and send text messages without taking out their phones.
/ SkyMagic from Singapore produces drone swarming technology for live entertainment and traffic management systems.
/ Swingvy from Korea provides human resources solutions for businesses.

We’re proud that several of these companies belong to organisations that are a part of the Google for Entrepreneurs partner network, a community of over 35 member spaces globally and programs supporting startups. They include startups from Kibar in Indonesia, Fishburners in Australia, Hubba in Thailand, and Found in Singapore.


Congratulations to these outstanding startups and their founders! They will pitch to a distinguished panel of leaders from Google for Entrepreneurs, Sequoia Capital China, and Venturra Capital on September 20th in Shanghai. The startups that impress could come home with funding from investors and up to $100,000 in Google Cloud Platform credits. Most importantly, we hope these incredible startups blaze a path forward for other founders and continue to improve the lives of others with their innovative products. Good luck in Shanghai!


By Michael Kim, Partnerships Manager, Google For Entrepreneurs

Doodle 4 Google is back! Show the world what inspires you

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Today we’re kicking off the 2018 Doodle 4 Google contest, where art-loving students from Class 1 to 10 from across India are invited to bring their imagination to life in a doodle of the Google logo. The winning masterpiece will be featured on www.google.co.in for a day on Children’s Day i.e. November 14, 2018, where millions of people will be able to see and appreciate it.





Does art inspire you? Clouds that look like faces? Trees that look like humans? Paper Planes? Discovering new galaxies? Artists have looked to the world around them for centuries to gain inspiration. At Google, we believe that these inspirations power the creativity and imagination that shapes the world. This year, we’re asking them to answer the question “What inspires you?”. From crayons to clay to water colors or graphic design, young artists can utilize any materials to bring their creation to life but like all Google Doodles, each doodle must incorporate the letters G-o-o-g-l-e.


Participating in the contest is fairly simple -- just download the form, let your imagination flow, draw your doodle and submit the same. Please visit ‘How it works’ page on the website for detailed instructions about participation.


Every year, we get thousands of brilliant entries from across the country, which makes picking a winner the hardest part of the contest. Luckily, we have some stellar guest judges to help, including creative mastermind Arun Iyer, famous artist and YouTube Kids Creator, Rob (Harun Robert), India’s leading female YouTube Creator Sejal Kumar and our original doodle team lead, Ryan Germick.


Submissions close on 6th October 2018 at 10:00PM IST. Internal judging and jury votes will be used to identify the top 20 doodles, which will be put up for public voting from October 23rd to November 5th, 2018, where the entire country will be able to vote for their favourite doodle. Winning doodle will be awarded a five lakh rupee college scholarship, along with many other prizes.


Every student between class 1 to 10 is welcome to enter their doodle at doodles.google.co.in/d4g. So for you parents, guardians and teachers out there: encourage your kids and students to participate. We can’t wait to see what inspires today’s generation the most.

By Sapna Chadha, Director of Marketing, Southeast Asia & India

Empowering India’s female entrepreneurs

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As the founder of the Art X Company, a startup dedicated to promoting greater public access to the arts, I know first-hand the challenges that women entrepreneurs face in trying to get their ideas off the ground. This makes a supportive environment all the more crucial for female founders.


I found my supportive environment in 91springboard, India’s largest coworking community—a space where entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to live out their dreams. Each day at 91springboard, I’m awed by the brilliant ideas produced by our vibrant community of self-made founders. I'm particularly proud of my fellow female founders who are using 91springboard to realize their visions.


91springboard provides a conducive environment for our startups to brainstorm, collaborate and share our stories, creating a community of peers that women entrepreneurs can rely on in a startup world that is not always designed to help us succeed. Since joining 91springboard, I have been able to grow my Art X team and start new initiatives like Art Walks in Bombay. I couldn’t be more grateful for the opportunities I’ve found in this space.
The New Delhi 91springboard space now is home to a Google Lounge, where entrepreneurs can focus on their work and brainstorm their latest innovations with others in the community.


Therefore, it’s incredibly special that 91springboard will be partnering with Google for Entrepreneurs to empower the next generation of female founders in India. With this partnership, 91springboard and Google for Entrepreneurs will provide monthly trainings, seminars and events to support female founders, especially in Tier II cities.


As a member of the Google for Entrepreneurs partner network, 91springboard community members will now have access to work from 35 member spaces globally, and have the opportunity to participate in programs Google runs for startups, such as Demo Day Asia in Shanghai this coming September and Google for Entrepreneurs Exchange.


91springboard is home to some incredible female-led startups, such as Nua Woman, the sanitary pad company that creates and delivers customized packages for each customer, Little Black Book, a one-stop online platform for food, lifestyle and events in India, and Buttercups, one of the first crowdfunded lingerie brands in the e-commerce space in India. Our hope is that with this partnership the number of female led startups in India will continue to grow!


By Rashmi Dhanwani, founder of the Art X Company
She’s a member of 91springboard, India’s largest coworking space and startup community with over 8,000 members across 9 cities.

Android 9 Pie: Powered by AI for a smarter, simpler experience that adapts to you

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The latest and greatest release of Android is officially here! Android 9 Pie comes with features that make your phone smarter and simpler to use, plus help you with your digital wellbeing.




The latest release of Android is here! And it comes with a heaping helping of artificial intelligence baked in to make your phone smarter, simpler and more tailored to you. Today we’re officially introducing Android 9 Pie.


We’ve built Android 9 to learn from you—and work better for you—the more you use it. From predicting your next task so you can jump right into the action you want to take, to prioritizing battery power for the apps you use most, to helping you disconnect from your phone at the end of the day, Android 9 adapts to your life and the ways you like to use your phone.


Tailored to you


Android 9 aims to make your phone even smarter by learning from you and adapting to your usage patterns. That’s why Android 9 comes with features like Adaptive Battery, which learns the apps you use most and prioritizes battery for them, and Adaptive Brightness, which learns how you like to set the brightness in different settings, and does it for you.
 
Android 9 also helps you get things done faster with App Actions, which predicts what you’ll want to do next based on your context and displays that action right on your phone. Say it’s Tuesday morning and you’re preparing for your commute: you’ll be suggested actions like navigating to work on Google Maps or resuming an audiobook with Google Play Books. And when you put in headphones after work, you may see options to call your mom or start your favorite Spotify playlist.
Later this fall, we’ll also roll out Slices (pie...slices...get it?!) which shows relevant information from your favorite apps when you need it. If you start typing “Lyft” into Google Search, you’ll see a “slice” of the Lyft app, showing prices for your ride home and the ETA for a driver so you can take action more quickly and easily.




Android 9 — now easy as pie
Making your phone smarter and more adaptive is important, but we also want Android to be easier to use and more approachable. In Android 9, we’ve introduced a new system navigation featuring a single home button.


This is especially helpful as phones grow taller and it’s more difficult to get things done on your phone with one hand. With a single, clean home button, you can swipe up to see a newly designed Overview, the spot where at a glance you have full-screen previews of your recently used apps.


You can swipe up from anywhere to see full-screen previews of recently used apps and simply tap to jump back into one of them. If you find yourself constantly switching between apps on your Pixel, we’ve got good news for you: Smart Text Selection (which recognizes the meaning of the text you’re selecting and suggests relevant actions) now works on the Overview of your recent apps, making it easier to perform the action you want.

Changing how you navigate your phone is a big deal, but small changes can make a big difference too. Android P also brings a redesigned Quick Settings, a better way to take and edit screenshots (say goodbye to the vulcan grip that was required before), simplified volume controls, an easier way to manage notifications and more. You’ll notice small changes like these across the platform, to help make the things you do all the time easier than ever.  


Find the balance that’s right for your life
While much of the time we spend on our phones is useful, many of us wish we could disconnect more easily and free up time for other things. In fact, over 70 percent of people we talked to in our research said they want more help with this. So we’ve been working to add key capabilities right into Android to help people achieve the balance with technology they’re looking for.  


At Google I/O in May, we previewed some of these digital wellbeing features for Android, including a new Dashboard that helps you understand how you’re spending time on your device; an App Timer that lets you set time limits on apps and grays out the icon on your home screen when the time is up; the new Do Not Disturb, which silences all the visual interruptions that pop up on your screen; and Wind Down, which switches on Night Light and Do Not Disturb and fades the screen to grayscale before bedtime.

Digital Wellbeing will officially launch on Pixel phones this fall, with Android One and other devices coming later this year. But these features are available in beta now for Pixel phones running Android 9. To try them out:

  1. Make sure you’re running Android 9 Pie on your device. (Learn how to check which version of Android you have.)
  2. Sign up for the beta with the email address you use with Google Play.
  3. Accept your invitation to become a beta tester by clicking the link in your welcome email.

Once you’ve accepted your invitation, Digital Wellbeing will appear in your phone’s Settings app. It may take up to 24 hours for Digital Wellbeing to appear on your device.


Security and privacy baked in


Improving security is always important in each of our platform releases.  In addition to continuously hardening the platform, and an improved security model for biometrics, Android 9 enables industry-leading hardware security capabilities to allow protecting sensitive data like credit card information using a secure, dedicated chip.  Android 9 also brings important privacy improvements, such as TLS by default and DNS over TLS to help protect all web communications and keep them private.


Coming to a device near you
Starting today, an over-the-air update to Android 9 will begin rolling out to Pixel phones. And devices that participated in the Beta program from Sony Mobile, Xiaomi, HMD Global, Oppo, Vivo, OnePlus, and Essential, as well as all qualifying Android One devices, will receive this update by the end of this fall! We are also working with a number of other partners to launch or upgrade devices to Android 9 this year.


Learn more about Android 9 Pie at android.com/9.

Posted by: Sameer Samat, VP of Product Management, Android & Google Play

Helping enterprises stay competitive with new updates in G Suite

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In 1958, U.S. corporations remained on the S&P 500 index for an average of 61 years, according to the American Enterprise Foundation. Fast forward to today and companies are being replaced approximately every two weeks. In this rapidly changing market, traditional companies are looking for ways to stay competitive and more and more enterprises, including Nielsen, Colgate and Airbus, are turning to G Suite to help them reimagine how they work to keep pace.


We know that enterprises want to move to cloud-first collaboration to transform how they work, but, understandably, they have questions about how to make it work in a business of their size. What happens with email security? How can they manage their data? How does G Suite work with the tools and systems they already have in place?
Yesterday we announced new products to help businesses reimagine how they work, and today we’re sharing additional solutions we’ve built to address these concerns.

Here’s a snapshot of what we’re announcing today. Read on for more detail.
/New Gmail (Redesigned security warnings, Snooze, Offline Access and more generally available for G Suite users)
/Cloud Search (being deployed by an initial set of customers)
/Google Voice for G Suite (available in our Early Adopter Program*)
/Drive Enterprise Sku (available for purchase)


Keeping businesses (and emails) secure
Keeping your data secure is our top priority, which is why we use machine learning to analyze threat indicators across billions of messages in Gmail to help quickly identify potential security attacks in the making. Machine learning helps protect more than 1.4 billion active Gmail user accounts from nearly 10 million spam and malicious emails every minute.


Today, we’re making the new Gmail generally available to G Suite customers so that, in addition to these baked-in security features, more companies can take advantage of features like redesigned security warnings, snooze, offline access and more. You can learn more in this post.


Bringing the best of Google Search to enterprise data
Searching through your company’s data should be as easy as doing a web search. But the reality is most companies’ information is spread across different silos and systems that don’t talk to each other, which makes finding things a lengthy chore. We introduced Cloud Search last year to make it easy to find information across G Suite in a way that’s intuitive and assistive. Today, we are announcing new Cloud Search functionality to help companies intelligently and securely index their third-party data beyond G Suite, whether that data is stored in the cloud, or on-prem.


Companies, like Whirlpool Corporation, have started deploying Cloud Search’s new capabilities to unify search across multiple data sources. Using Cloud Search’s new SDKs, APIs and connectors for third-party connectivity, Whirlpool created a custom app called Whirlpool SearchPro that indexes more than 12 million documents across different on-prem and cloud systems and returns results in 100s of milliseconds on average. Moreover, search results reflect the specific permissions and access controls from each of the source systems to ensure that individuals only see the information they should.
Whirlpool Cloud Search - G Suite Next '18
Cloud Search’s new functionality will be available to G Suite Enterprise customers as well as  any company looking to power their enterprise search needs as a new standalone offering. We’re also pleased to offer qualifying Google Search Appliance customers an upgrade path to Cloud Search. Cloud Search is currently being deployed by an initial set of customers, and we’re excited to have 15 launch partners on board, including SADA, Onix and Accenture. Learn more.

Enabling smarter and easier collaboration
We first introduced Hangouts Chat, Hangouts Meet and Hangouts Meet hardware last year to make it easier for employees to collaborate with colleagues across the globe, be it face-to-face or via chat. Aside from bringing the best of video conferencing to businesses, we also want to create better telephony solutions so that employees can be more productive over the phone. For close to a decade, millions of consumers have used Google Voice to connect with folks across the globe. Now we’re bringing an enterprise version of Voice to G Suite.

On top of the existing features that users love, Google Voice is tightly integrated with G Suite apps, like Hangouts Meet and Google Calendar, and provides administrator capabilities best suited for the enterprise. Admins can manage users, provision and port phone numbers, access detailed reports and set up call routing functionality. Voice also lets you deploy phone numbers to employees, or even entire departments, at once, and assigns a  number that’s not tied to a specific device. AI-powered features in Voice also help facilitate voicemail transcription and spam filtering, which helps eliminate disruptions for employees so they can focus on what’s important.


“Google Voice quickly emerged as our preferred telephony solution for remote teams and frequent travelers.” - Kim Anstett, Chief Information Officer, Nielsen.


We’ve been testing this enterprise version with key customers since last October. As a part of the Trusted Tester* program, Nielsen noticed major improvements in reliability and call quality compared to previous phone solutions. “Google Voice quickly emerged as our preferred telephony solution for remote teams and frequent travelers,” says Kim Anstett, Chief Information Officer at Nielsen. “In fact, we’re excited to announce plans to leverage Voice as the standard for remote work telephony at Nielsen.”


To try out Google Voice within your organization, you can sign up for the Early Adopter Program.


Making transitioning to the cloud simple
Lastly, we want to make it simpler for businesses to adopt and use G Suite, and a large part of this is ensuring a smooth transition off legacy enterprise content management (ECM) systems. To help, our customers will now be able to purchase Drive Enterprise as a standalone offering with usage-based pricing.


With Drive Enterprise, businesses can move their content to the cloud in Google Drive, and employees can create and collaborate securely with tools like Docs, Sheets and Slides without disrupting other legacy office productivity tools. More than 2 trillion files are stored in Google Drive to date, and most recently, Google was named a leader in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Content Collaboration Platforms (CCP) for the second year in a row. Learn more about the new Drive Enterprise.
Drive Sku - G Suite Next '18
We’ve also made a concerted effort to make it easier to use G Suite with existing legacy tools so that you can avoid interruptions at work. Whether it’s making sure your calendar details stay intact between Microsoft Exchange and Google Calendar, providing new ways to integrate Hangout Meet with existing hardware, making it easier to collaborate with teams outside of your domain and more, we’re focused on building solutions to make your work day easier. Read more about our latest interoperability capabilities in this post.


Try today
Visit the G Suite website to see how you can transform how your enterprise operates.


*The G Suite Trusted Tester and Early Adopter Programs will soon be renamed as Alpha and Beta, respectively. More details to come.

By Garrick Toubassi, Vice President of Engineering, G Suite

Live from Google Cloud Next: Advancing every business in the Cloud

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Hello to everyone from Google Cloud Next ‘18. Today we’re joined by more than 20,000 people here in San Francisco—the biggest Google event ever. I’m excited for what the next three days have in store.


Information is powering much of our economy, and the scope of technology has evolved to encompass all of business and all of society. IT departments used to be a cost center. Now, they're a key driver of business. Companies are re-engineering how they do business as part of their journey to the cloud. IT is being used to advance every field. We are seeing such amazing growth, and yet we are clearly in the beginning stage.


So, as companies move everything to the cloud, why are they choosing Google?


Google is what I would call a modern enterprise company. Google’s business is information, and thus Google Cloud was built to efficiently take in information, organize it, and give back intelligence. This is what every company needs in order to drive their business—supercharged information.
A strong foundation in the cloud
People generally acknowledge that Google has an incredibly advanced cloud; it is pretty amazing. It includes many football stadium-sized data centers, all running carbon neutral; hundreds of thousands of miles of fiber-optic submarine cables; hyper-fast machine-to-machine interconnects; specialized processors like Titan and TPU; Spanner, a relational database that provides global transaction consistency; and big data tools like BigQuery that can process an entire petabyte in 3.7 minutes.


Throughout Next ‘18, we will be going deep on AI and security, areas that Google invests in heavily. Why? Because security is the number one worry, and AI is the number one opportunity.
Security is built into every layer of our operation. We announced 20 new security advancements in March and will be announcing another 10 new security products and services this week. This year, we were proud that Forrester recognized us as a leader in public cloud platform native security.


For productivity apps, one of the most secure ways to set up your organization is to combine a Chromebook, G Suite and two factor authentication hardware in the Chromebook USB port. Companies are catching on. Chromebooks for enterprise sales were up more than 175% last year and G Suite adoption is also accelerating. G Suite’s Gmail is able to stop 99.9% of spam and phishing attacks. In addition to being secure, G Suite is so powerful for improving and transforming how we work.  


AI is our biggest collective opportunity
Early on, Google’s founders had the vision that AI was going to be important. Today, AI is built into everything we do at Google. From our data center energy usage to BigQuery to Gmail, AI is applied throughout our business. Now we are working to make it easy for you to incorporate the power of AI into what you do. In the last year we introduced automated machine learning model generation, AutoML, and we are announcing new versions today.
Throughout our conference we will be talking about open source, where Google is a leader with more than 2,000 open source projects, including TensorFlow and Kubernetes. We have been running the underlying technology and concepts that make up Kubernetes inside Google for over a decade. By the time we introduced it in Google Cloud, it had more than 20,000 contributors and is approaching one million comments and pull requests, making it one of the fastest moving projects in the history of open source.


Two years ago, at a much smaller Next event, we had a meeting with industry analysts who told us it would probably take us 10 years to become enterprise ready. We listened and we got on it. We called it our table stakes effort. Fast forward two years and a lot of hard work and we were recently named a leader multiple Gartner’s Magic Quadrants, hopefully more are coming.


Building a better cloud for our customers
Cloud is an extremely complex business and enterprise-readiness includes excellence at helping customers—from startups and digital natives to global leaders. Over the course of Next, we have over 290 customer speakers, from every size and industry imaginable, to share what they’ve learned on their journey to the cloud. In health, we saw the opportunity to bring Google’s healthcare machine learning to market.


We are working with the Broad Institute on genome processing tools and we are developing an API for making healthcare records interoperable, as well as a way to anonymize records. Some of our customers in this sector include Cardinal Health, Lahey Health, Cleveland Clinic and Fitbit.
Today, we are announcing a partnership with the National Institutes of Health to make it easier to access and analyze large biomedical data sets, which we believe will accelerate efforts to find treatments and cures for disease. Healthcare is just one of many industriesthat can benefit from Google’s innovation in the cloud.


Part of our success has to do with our engineer-to-engineer engagement model. In the last year alone, we’ve tripled the number of engineers who work with customers, including in our customer engineering team and our professional services organization. By design, we have more customer engineers than sales reps.


We’ve built our Office of the CTO so that early in your cloud journey, you have access to super experienced and knowledgeable technologists. This group has been in demand, so we’ve grown the team 10X over the last year. Perhaps our most immersive customer engagement offering is our Advanced Solutions Lab. There, customers work side-by-side with Google engineers, learning how to apply machine learning to solve their biggest business challenges.  

Working together with our partners
Partners are key to us and to our customers. We have strategic integration and go-to-market partners, channel partners, and system integrators. On the strategic side, the SAP partnership we announced last year at Next has made great progress. This year, we partnered with Cisco on a hybrid cloud and on-prem version of Kubernetes that will ship soon. And last fall we announced that we can integrate a customer’s Salesforce CRM data, their Google Ads data, and any other data source, all in BigQuery. System integrators including Accenture and Deloitte are building out practices specifically for Google Cloud, as are many other SIs.


Our channel is now over 12,000 strong and we are increasing our enablement programs. They help us extend our reach, and when these partners work with customers, we offer to support the work with one of our professional services engineers.


Another important area is training and communities—training for customers, partners, and our own team. We’ve tripled our training and enablement headcount. Our customers are taking more than 100 times as many GCP courses via Qwiklabs than a year ago, on topics like machine learning, big data, and Kubernetes.


Looking ahead
I have spent a lot of enjoyable time this last year meeting with companies, both large and small, discussing what might be possible with Google Cloud. Many of the engagements have been astonishing, particularly with companies where IT was not historically a key driver of their growth.


An engagement will start out as an effort to save costs on infrastructure; at first it is often very competitive amongst the three clouds. Then, as we start to brainstorm around where the business wants to go, we start talking about what our technology could make possible, and that changes the discussion. Many times now, our customer pauses, and they end up rethinking their entire product strategy, even their vision of the future. When we resume, there is a much more ambitious plan. It has been great to be a part of that process of true digital transformation, and it makes all of us in Google Cloud proud to engage in these opportunities.


For the smaller companies and startups we work with, it’s sometimes a different story. Their ambitions are big, and robust cloud services will help them get there. But at our core, we’re a developer-led company, and developers are constantly top of mind for us as we grow and expand Google Cloud. We never stop thinking about what they need, and what tools will make them better, more focused, and more productive.


The theme of our conference is Made Here Together. On behalf of all of us at Google, we are excited to be at Next with our customers and partners who are building together with us.


By Diane Greene, CEO, Google Cloud

What happened at Google Cloud Next ‘18: Day 1

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What a way to kick off Next ‘18. We started by welcoming our community of leaders, developers, and entrepreneurs to Moscone Center in San Francisco. As Diane mentioned in her keynote, it was Google’s biggest event ever, with more than 25,000 registrants. We learned how the cloud is reimagining work, rethinking the contact center, and redefining what’s possible for many of our customers. (Plus, there was a surprise visit from Sundar.) Read on for the highlights.




Better building in the cloud
Cloud computing is so much more than outsourced infrastructure—it promises agility, reliability and scale. We want to deliver on that promise, so today, we announced Cloud Services Platform, a set of foundational services and technologies that deliver advanced operational and management capabilities to your IT environment, in the cloud and on-premise. Read more in our Cloud Services Platform and serverless announcements.

What we announced

  • We’re introducing a service mesh based on the open-source Istio, which will soon move to version 1.0, and Managed Istio, a fully managed version thereof, running in GCP. Also, Apigee API Management for Istio lets enterprises operationalize microservices created by the Istio service mesh with their existing API management tools.
  • For Istio and App Engine workloads, the new Stackdriver Service Monitoring provides an SRE-inspired, service-oriented view of your workloads, showing you how your end users experience your systems.
  • We’re furthering hybrid computing with GKE On-Prem, a Google-configured version of Kubernetes that includes multi-cluster management, that you can deploy on-premise or in other clouds.
  • GKE Policy Management establishes a single source of truth for the policies that govern your Kubernetes workloads, across any enrolled cluster.
  • We want you to build all your applications serverlessly, even if you use Kubernetes. To help you do that, we will offer the new GKE serverless add-on. Then, we’re releasing that same serverless framework as open-source under the name Knative.
  • Speaking of serverless, we’re adding support for Python 3.7 and PHP 7.2 runtimes on App Engine standard environment.
  • Cloud Functions is now generally available, with support for additional languages, plus performance, networking and security features.
  • Serverless containers on Cloud Functions allow you to run container-based workloads in a fully managed environment and still only pay for what you use.
  • Cloud Firestore lets you store and sync your app data at global scale, with access within the GCP Console coming soon.
  • Finally, Cloud Build is our new continuous integration/continuous delivery (CI/CD) service that’s integrated with popular developer tools and that lets you build serverless applications.


AI for every business
Empowering businesses and developers to do more with AI means providing them with tools that make it possible to take advantage of machine learning, regardless of skill level or expertise. Read more in our AI and Contact Center blog posts.

What we announced

  • Cloud AutoML Vision, Natural Language, and Translation extend powerful ML models to suit specific needs, without requiring any specialized knowledge in machine learning or coding.
  • TPU V3s, our custom ASIC chips designed for machine learning workloads, are in alpha.
  • New enhancements to Dialogflow Enterprise Edition enable you to design smarter and more conversational interfaces.
  • A new solution, Contact Center AI, which includes new Dialogflow features alongside other tools to assist live agents and perform analytics.
Reimagining how we work
In order to stay competitive, companies are reimagining how their global teams work together using cloud-native collaboration in G Suite that’s smart, simple and secure. Proactively protect against security threats, manage where company data is stored and shared and communicate more effectively with these new, assistive capabilities in G Suite. Read more in this post from G Suite.


What we announced

  • A new investigation tool in the Security Center helps admins identify which users are potentially infected, see if anything’s been shared externally and remove access to Drive files or delete malicious emails.
  • Customers can choose where to store primary data for select G Suite apps—globally, distributed, U.S. or Europe—with Data Regions for G Suite.
  • Smart Reply is coming to HangoutsChat. Using AI, Smart Reply recognizes which messages need responses and proposes reply options that are casual enough for chat, yet appropriate for the workplace.
  • Smart Compose in Gmail intelligently autocompletes emails for you—by filling in greetings, common phrases and more–so you collaborate more efficiently. Smart Compose will be available to G Suite customers in the coming weeks.
  • Grammar Suggestions in Google Docs uses a unique machine translation-based approach to recognize grammatical errors (simple and complex) and suggest corrections. It is available in an Early Adopter Program (“beta”) for G Suite customers today.
  • Voice Commands for Hangouts Meet hardware brings some of the same magic of the Google Assistant to the conference room so that teams can connect to video meetings quickly. Voice Commands will roll out to select Meet hardware customers later this year.
What our customers are saying
At Next ‘18 we’re joined by more than 290 customer speakers. Here are a few of our favorite quotes from day one:


“My guys love working with your team. We’ve learned a lot from Google about site reliability engineering. But more than that, I think it’s the commitment to open source—that made all the difference. At the end of the day, it wasn’t me who chose Google, it was my engineers. Google was important to the engineering team, so it mattered to me.”Mike McNamara, Executive VP, Chief Information and Digital Officer, Target


“[Visiting your midwest data center] made us realize Google was operating at a totally different scale. I also came to appreciate how much security was involved at every single point. Security to get into the complex. Security for each server. And security for destroying drives that were no longer being used.”Bernd Leukert, Member of the Executive Board, Products & Innovation, SAP SE


"We have 95 years of innovation. As the world and consumers change, we have to change too. My job is to make sure over 40,000 associates in over 100 countries have the most robust tools to innovate and service our clients… [we needed] a collaboration platform that allows our employees to connect anytime, anywhere on any device. That led us to G Suite."Kim Anstett, Chief Information Officer, Nielsen


“Standardizing monitoring signals lets us monitor across our systems, correlate logs, and do distributed tracing. But these monitoring concepts requires services to communicate in a standard way. With Istio…We have a uniform and transparent mechanism to collect metrics and logs…and are running it in production.” Jeff White, Software Engineer, eBay


We’ll be updating this post all week as it happens at Next ‘18. Check back here tomorrow for the latest news from the event.


Posted by Google Cloud Next team

Mid-year Update on Our Five Creator Priorities for 2018

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Dear YouTube Creators,


It’s hard to believe we’re already halfway through 2018. With 1.9 billion logged-in users coming to YouTube each month, our community continues to grow. More and more creators are building their businesses and discovering that they can shape the global conversation with just a phone and an internet connection. While mobile is one of the most popular ways fans enjoy content, more and more people are using their living room screens to watch their favorite creators. On average, users now watch over 180 million hours of YouTube on TV screens every day.  


While the future is full of opportunity, it is not without challenges. One of the ways we make YouTube better is through testing and iterations, but we understand that sudden changes related to experiments are difficult to manage. So, in order to minimize the disruption for you, we will make our best effort to communicate with you as these tests approach and we’ll use your feedback to make the features better in the long run.


And now, here is an update on my five key priorities for 2018:


1. Transparency and Communication
We continue to prioritize communicating more with creators. We made a conscious effort to respond on social media, and we answered 600% more tweets through our official handles (@TeamYouTube, @YTCreators and @YouTube) in 2018 than in 2017 and grew our reach by 30% in the past few months. We’ve also built a new feature than enables us to deliver relevant information in YouTube Studio, formerly Creator Studio.  In February, we began testing a new dashboard with a small group of creators, and we recently rolled out it out to all creators on the platform. The dashboard, which launched for all English channels and will soon be available in an additional 76 languages in the next two weeks, now gives you platform updates and news along with performance about your latest videos in one easy-to-find place.


Last year, I started my own channel with the goal of communicating more with creators and saw first-hand some of the challenges and opportunities of sharing my voice through video. Today, I’m posting a new video, along with this blog, updating you on the five key annual priorities. Additionally, Creator Insider, an unofficial channel started by YouTube employees, continues to offer weekly updates, responds to concerns, such as notifications, and provides a more behind-the-scenes look at some of our product launches. And most recently, we combined our Creator Academy and YouTube Creators channels, so that you can find both inspiration and education in one place: YouTube Creators.




2. Supporting your success
This year at VidCon we shared some exciting new products designed to grow and strengthen our communities and give you more ways to earn revenue in addition to ads, including:

Channel Memberships - Viewers pay a monthly recurring fee of $4.99 to get unique badges, new emojis, Members-only posts in the Community tab, and access to unique custom perks offered by creators, such as exclusive livestreams, extra videos, or shout-outs. We worked with a small group of creators to develop this service and are expanding it to eligible channels with more than 100,000 subscribers and even more creators in the coming months.

Merch - We’ve joined forces with Teespring so creators can choose from over 20 merchandise items to customize and sell via a shelf on their channel. This is available to all eligible U.S.-based channels with over 10,000 subscribers, with expanded merchandising partners and availability for creators coming soon.

Famebit - Acquired by Google in 2016, FameBit has been helping brands tap into YouTube's audience by using creator's authentic voices to develop unique branded content at scale. Over half of channels that used Famebit in the first three months of 2018 doubled their YouTube revenue. In the coming months, we’ll be launching a feature that will allow users to easily shop for products, apps or tickets directly from the creator watch page.


In addition to new products, we continue to invest in YouTube Originals as another way to help creators earn more revenue. Well over two-thirds of our Originals star YouTubers both in front of and behind the camera, and since we launched Originals three years ago, we’ve seen their success have a ripple effect on creators. Some creators have seen as much as a 20 percent increase in channel viewership after their Original has launched.


Finally, one of my biggest priorities is to show advertisers the incredible opportunities on YouTube to tap into engaged communities and extend their reach. We’ve been working hard on brand safety and meeting with the biggest brands in the world to share your incredible stories and the progress we’re making together. The results have been positive, and I continue to make this a priority.


3. Giving people more ways to engage
One of the greatest strengths of the platform is enabling two-way conversations between creators and fans and fans to fans. We’ve been working hard to build out the different ways to enable interactions on YouTube and seeing results. Our overall interactions, such as likes, comments and chats, grew by more than 60% year over year.


Our Community Tab continues to be a one-stop shop for growing and engaging with fans. Visible across the platform, these posts let you move beyond just video to build even deeper connections with fans through GIFs, pics, polls, and text. Every day, over sixty million users click into or engage with Community posts.


Livestreaming continues to be an area of growth for creators, with watchtime of livestreams increasing by 10X over the last three years. At VidCon, we launched Premieres to help creators take advantage of the popularity of live tools, such as Super Chat and scheduling, by allowing them to debut pre-recorded videos as a live moment on YouTube.


We’re also seeing more creators use Stories, a simple way of posting videos without editing or post-production, to engage with their fans as well. We have some key improvements coming soon and later this year, we will expand stories to all eligible creators with more than ten thousand subscribers.


4. Tightening and enforcing our policies
Earlier this year, we released the first YouTube Community Guidelines Enforcement Report and we’ll be updating this regularly with new data. We just released the newest update in late June, which you can read here.


We also announced our new Copyright Match tool, which uses the matching power of Content ID to help creators find copies of your content when it’s been uploaded by other channels. This will be offered to all creators, including those who are not part of a multi-channel network (MCN). We’ve been testing this tool with a thousand creators over the last year to tailor it to your specific needs and is a great complement to the range of copyright tools we provide.


5. Learning and education
Education is one of the greatest benefits of YouTube. Everyday, people watch learning-related content over a billion times and they’re using it to develop new skills and encourage their passions. I’m proud to announce a new initiative, YouTube Learning, through which we’re providing grants and promotion to support education focused creator content, expert organizations and learners. We're also expanding our learning content team efforts and have a newly dedicated product and engineering team working on building out features for learning on YouTube. Our hope is to support those who use YouTube to share their knowledge with the world and the millions of users who come to our platform to learn.


Looking forward
As our devices have become an increasingly important part of our lives, we want to support digital wellbeing. When we rolled out the YouTube Kids app, we included a timer that parents could use to limit the time their children spent in the app. We have since realized that a timer could also be helpful for adults. So, within the broader YouTube app, we’ve launched a feature that sends users a reminder to take a break. We’ve also added an option for users to get a single digest notification once per day from YouTube rather than at the moment notifications, and we enabled users to configure their notifications so that they happen within specific timeframes.


As we head into the second half of the year, I look forward to continuing to work with you to create communities and engage with people using video. You are building the next generation of media companies, and I’m humbled by the amazing work you do every day.


Susan Wojcicki
CEO of YouTube

Introducing Launchpad Accelerator India, a dedicated program for ML/AI startups focused on Solving for India’s needs

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Applications are open starting today


Over the last 3.5 years, Google’s Launchpad has successfully supported hundreds of startups from India. From short format startup mentorship activities like Launchpad Start and Build to the 6-month global Launchpad Accelerator, Indian startups have experienced the best of Google’s mentor network, resources, methodologies and technology. Thirty Indian startups have benefitted from our global Launchpad Accelerator program, helping them collectively raise over $70M and drive revenue increases of almost 500%.


Based on the growing maturity of the Indian startup ecosystem, last year we launched an India-only pilot “Solve for India”, to identify startups that were focused on building solutions that serves India’s needs using latest technologies.  We identified several startups from this roadshow and hosted a “Solve for India” mentorship boot camp,  where the founders and their teams spent four days in one-on-one consults with experts from Google and mentors from the industry to solve critical product and growth challenges.



Building on the efforts of our Launchpad offerings till date and based on our learning from the pilot, today we're excited to announce Google’s Launchpad Accelerator India, our new mentorship program tailored exclusively for startups based in India and  deploying Machine Learning/AI to build solutions for India’s local needs.


Launchpad Accelerator India will kick-off as a three-month accelerator that provides Indian startups with mentorship and access to the best of Google - its people, network and technologies. Applications for the first class is now open until July 31, 12pm IST and the first class will begin in September 2018, where shortlisted startups will get to attend a two week in-person bootcamp.


What do we look for when selecting startups?
Startups will need to meet the following criteria to be considered for the Launchpad Accelerator India:


All startups in the program should:
1/ Be a technology startup.
2/ Be based in India.  
3/ Have preferably at least raised seed funding.
4/ Address a challenge that is specific to India
5/ Use advanced technology like AI/ML to power the solution.


Each class will consist of upto 10 startups who will receive mentorship and support from the best of Google in AI/ML, Cloud, UX, Android, Web, Product Strategy and Marketing. Startups will also receive Google Cloud Credits from  $20K - going up to $100K each.


We look forward to welcome the first cohort of innovators for Launchpad Accelerator India and will continue to support them to drive innovation for  India .


Posted by Paul Ravindranath, Regional Lead, Launchpad Accelerator, Google India

Building a better news experience on YouTube, together

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The work of trusted journalistic organizations is as critical as ever, especially when it comes to seeking information about current events online.


In March, the Google News Initiative (GNI) kicked off with the goal of helping journalism thrive in the digital age. Today, we’re announcing steps we’re taking with the GNI to support the future of news in online video, and product features we’ve been working on to improve the news experience on YouTube.  


Supporting journalism with technology that allows news to thrive
We believe quality journalism requires sustainable revenue streams and that we have a responsibility to support innovation in products and funding for news.


For example, in 2015 European publishers came to us to ask about how they could scale their video efforts, especially because maintaining video delivery infrastructure is costly. Working alongside them we launched Player for Publishers, a solution that enables news organizations to use YouTube’s video player to give viewers a world-class video experience across their own websites and mobile apps. Player for Publishers reduces costs and offers improved monetization for news organizations.


Since then, we've expanded these efforts beyond Europe.

Today, over 100 publishers in more than 25 countries use Player for Publishers.


As part of the launch of GNI in March, we announced funding to support the future of news. Today we are committing $25M to a YouTube-specific investment:

1/ Expertise.  We’re establishing a working group with news organizations and experts from around the world to help us develop new product features, improve the news experience on YouTube, and tackle emerging challenges. News organizations including Vox Media, Jovem Pan, and India Today are early members of the working group. We’re looking forward to having more join as we convene the group in the coming weeks.   

2/ Innovation Funding. We will provide funding across approximately 20 global markets to support news organizations in building sustainable video operations. Provided on an application basis to news organizations of all types, these grants will enable our partners to build key capabilities, train staff on video best practices, enhance production facilities and develop formats optimized for online video.

3/ Support. We’re significantly expanding our team focused on supporting news publishers. These specialists will be based around the world and support partners with training and best practices in formats, audience development, day-to-day platform operations, and sophisticated technical integrations.


News organizations interested in more information about these efforts can sign up here.


Making authoritative sources readily accessible
Authoritativeness is essential to viewers, especially during fast-moving, breaking news events, so we’ve been investing in new product features to prominently surface authoritative sources:


Providing more sources and context on breaking news
After a breaking news event, it takes time to verify, produce and publish high-quality videos. Journalists often write articles first to break the news rather than produce videos. That’s why in the coming weeks in the U.S. we will start providing a short preview of news articles in search results on YouTube that link to the full article during the initial hours of a major news event, along with a reminder that breaking and developing news can rapidly change.  


Expanding Top News and Breaking News
To make it easier to find quality news, our Top News shelf prominently highlights videos from news sources in search results (see the picture below on the left). And when a breaking news event happens, we want users to know about it. That’s why our Breaking News shelf highlights videos from news organizations about that event directly on the YouTube homepage (see the picture below on the right). Today, our Top News and Breaking News features are launched in 17 countries, including the U.S., U.K., France, Italy, Japan, India, Mexico, Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria and more. We will double that number in the coming months.


  


Showcasing more local news, starting with the U.S.  
Many people want, value, and trust local news. And when a major event happens, local reporters are often the first on site to capture events as they unfold. We’ve begun testing features that surface local news in the free YouTube app for TV screens across 25 media markets around the United States, making it easy to access local news in the living room--our fastest growing screen. So far, local news has seen strong engagement, and we will be expanding it to dozens more markets like Cincinnati, Las Vegas and Kansas City.


Providing context to help people make their own decisions
We also believe users should be able to choose and make their own judgments about the information they consume along with context to inform their judgments. That’s why we’re rolling out a few new features that we will continue to build upon:


Giving users more sources of information on topical searches and videos
Starting today, users will begin seeing information from third parties, including Wikipedia and Encyclopædia Britannica, alongside videos on a small number of well-established historical and scientific topics that have often been subject to misinformation, like the moon landing and the Oklahoma City Bombing.


Investing in digital literacy education
Along with the Google News Initiative and Google.org, we have teamed up with the Poynter Institute, Stanford University, Local Media Association, and the National Association for Media Literacy Education (NAMLE) to support MediaWise, a U.S.-based initiative designed to equip 1 million teens with digital literacy skills. Six incredible YouTube Creators, including John Green, Ingrid Nilsen, and Mark Watson, will be working with MediaWise to bring awareness to digital literacy and help educate teens.


We remain committed to working with the journalism community to build a more sustainable video ecosystem for news organizations. We know there is a lot of work to do, but we’re eager to provide a better experience to users who come to YouTube every day to learn more about what is happening in the world from a diversity of sources.


By Neal Mohan, Chief Product Officer and Robert Kyncl, Chief Business Officer