Today at the Google for India event in New Delhi, the Mountain View tech giant announced loads of products specifically for India. Google has been pushing really hard to optimise its services for the Indian users that are yet to hop on the internet boom. The company has optimised its apps and services for lower-end devices and has introduced its services in local languages as well at the today’s event.
Android Oreo (Go Edition)
Probably the biggest announcement from today was Android Oreo (Go Edition). First announced at the Google I/O earlier this year, you can take the Android Go as the stripped-down version of the full-fledged Android OS. Google has optimised Android Oreo for devices with less than 1GB of RAM that ensures a 15 percent improvement in the app load time.
Not just the OS, Google has also redesigned its core apps to suite the Go Edition phones’ needs. Most of the Google apps, including the Assistant, have been optimised specifically for Android Go. This further brings their app size down along with data consumption. Google Go, Assistant Go, and Files Go are some of the apps that will be making the user experience better.
Google Go is a variant of Google app that brings a bunch of services together at one place. The app itself weighs less than 5MB and is 40 percent lighter on your data plan. Files Go had surfaced a while back that allows the user to manage the storage space on their budget phones. You can easily free up space on your device and can even share your files offline with the people nearby. The phones running Android Oreo (Go Edition) will be launched in the months to follow.
Google Assistant on JioPhone
The Reliance JioPhone already had a version of voice assistant built in but from now on, it will be replaced with Google Assistant. This would be the first time that the Google Assistant has been made available for a feature phone. The Assistant on JioPhone will be able to handle the search queries both in English and Hindi.
Bill Payments on Tez
— Tez by Google (@TezbyGoogle) December 5, 2017
Google brought Tez to India in September and it has already crossed 12 million users mark. Based on UPI payment system, the Google Tez app has managed to be one of the top UPI based apps currently available. In fact, as per Google, 70 percent of the UPI transactions are done via Google Tez! The app today got the ability to pay your utility bills with 70 billers already onboard.
The company has made the experience much more intuitive, yet again. Once you have added your account to your biller, Tez app will automatically fetch your pending bills. All your paid bills will be arranged in a chronological order to avoid any kind of confusion. Sparks is another feature that Google introduced to the app, which is basically the GIFs that the receiver of the message will see if you have included the trigger word in your message.
Two-Wheeler Navigation on Google Maps
— Google India (@GoogleIndia) December 5, 2017
Being the world’s biggest two-wheeler market, most of the Indians travel on bikes and scooters. Starting this month, Google Maps will show navigation via two-wheelers as well, alongside the usual car, public transport, and walking. The navigation for the two-wheelers will be specifically optimised to use the narrow lanes that the cars can’t go through.
As demonstrated at the event, the routes taken in the Motorcycle Mode would be different from that of a car, so will the travel time. The voice-guided navigation feature will also let the rider know of any road blockage on the way along with the parking situation at the destination. The Google Maps has also seen two-fold growth in India.
Air Quality Answers
With the deteriorating air quality in the northern India, Google will now also show the air quality in the search app. The feature will be available for 22 Indian cities and was designed after a number of queries that were made when pollution in Delhi, and other northern regions, was at its peak. The feature will grade the pollution level according to its severity and will tell you the best practices accordingly.
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