NEW DELHI/HYDERABAD:Adding another feather to its cap, the pearl city can soon boast of housing the only own campus of IT giant Google in entire Asia. This will also be the biggest facility of Google, outside the United States of America (USA). With the Google CEO, Sundar Pichai’s official announcement of setting up Google’s new campus in Hyderabad on Wednesday, the Telangana government’s aggressive industrial policy has made one of its biggest achievements so far.
Following Pichai’s announcement in New Delhi, K T Rama Rao, IT Minister of Telangana, thanked him for choosing Hyderabad for the company’s expansion plans in India. “Thanks Sunder Pichai for reiterating commitment to Hyderabad,” the Minister tweeted.
During the visit of the IT minister to Silicon Valley in USA, a few months ago, the State government signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Google, according to which 7.2 acres of land in Gachibowli has been allotted for its new campus.
Google agreed to invest Rs 1,000 crore in the project in four years. As per the agreement, the new facility of Google will be developed in a sprawling 2 million square feet campus in the middle of the IT Corridor of Hyderabad. Google is expecting the facility to be operational by 2019.
The new campus in Hyderabad, is also going to double its employee count. Sunder Pichai, who was in New Delhi on Wednesday, announced that Hyderabad is one of the cities where Google is planning to recruit more employees. Bengaluru is another Indian city that will see recruitment by the company. Google had already announced that it would launch India’s first ‘Street View’ project in Hyderabad. Reacting to the announcement, IT Secretary of Telangana, Jayesh Ranjan, said, “The ground work has already been done. Once the necessary clearances are obtained, it can be launched.”
Free Wi-Fi at 100 Rly Stations
Meanwhile, the visit of Sundar Pichai to India underlined Google’s intention to provide internet in the entire country while announcing free Wi-Fi in 100 railway stations by next year as promised to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his visit to Silicon Valley earlier this year. The telecom wing of the Indian Railway, RailTel, had signed an agreement with the subsidiary of Google India to provide Wi-Fi facilities at 400 stations across the country. Mumbai Central will be the first station to get Wi-Fi by January.
On his first overseas visit after taking over as the chief of Google, Sundar Pichai made a strong statement about the importance India will play in the overall strategy of the company in the future. Pichai said that Google will invest heavily in not just enabling internet access in the country but also in making sure that great products are developed in the country.
Google is launching a programme to train 2 million developers on its Android platform over the next three years in partnership with the National Skill Development Corporation of India as the Global search giant plans to build a new campus in Hyderabad.
The tech giant also unveiled two new projects to boost its penetration into India’s vast rural and semi-urban hinterland. The first is ‘Project Loon’ a network of high-altitude, internet-beaming balloons that will help connect towns and villages with no access to cables or an optic fibre grid. The company has sent a proposal to the government of India to float balloons over the airspace that will provide internet connectivity to the hard-to-access rural areas.