Google plans to expand internet access across India

IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad with Google CEO Sundar Pichai at Google's headquarters. (PTI photo)

IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad met the Google's India-born CEO Sundar Pichai at their headquarters in California on Thursday and discussed the plans for enabling internet access across India and the role of technology in empowering Indian users.

Prasad visited Google's headquarters in Mountain View, California on Wednesday, according to a statement from Google.

During the visit to the Google Campus, Prasad met senior members of the leadership team at Google to discuss the role technology can play in empowering Indian users and addressing challenges unique to India.

Prasad was briefed about Google’s plans in India for enabling access, Indic language computing, Artificial Intelligence solutions for social good and capacity building of startups and Small and Midsize business.

Prasad was also shown a demonstration of cutting-edge innovations on the Google Campus, along with a glimpse into upcoming features in popular Google products.

"Digital payments have played a pivotal role in India’s growth story and they are driving the digital revolution in India," Prasad said, adding that companies like Google are an integral part of the Indian government’s efforts to digitally empower India's citizens.

At the meeting, Pichai said it was great to discuss with the Indian leader the country's "exciting digital transformation that's bringing lots of new opportunity to the region. It's a privilege to be a part of it."

During his visit to California, Prasad held discussions with several leading technology and business CEOs and senior executives including venture capitalists focused on the Indian market.

The meetings discussed the need to work collectively to better manage technology challenges like data privacy and security issues, especially in the context of next-generation technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things, according to a statement by the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM).

NASSCOM President Debjani Ghosh said expressed confidence that the digital transformation opportunities in India, as outlined by Prasad, "will open doors for investors to establish and participate in India’s rewarding growth story.

"With innovation and digitisation at the heart of both the countries' DNAs, we are sure that our synergies with the business community in California, will lead to a long and fruitful symbiotic relationship."

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Google plans to expand internet access across India

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