The year was 1998, people were living in a time when population on this planet was rapidly increasing worldwide. In India people were trying to play catchup in terms of development as we were preparing to become a superpower. At that time mobile phones were new in the market and it was also a status symbol. People stayed in touch with each other mostly through letters. Making calls through STD booth was a trend, but that was also a bit costly. Slowly the working category of our country was getting used to technology. In the same year Larry Page and Sergey Brin laid a foundation for a multi-billion-dollar company named Google. It was founded by. Initially it was only a search engine which provided us with results in return of our queries. But now it has been entering into sectors which are meant for future generations and is slowly making us completely dependent on it.
Today almost everyone uses internet. We search almost everything on the internet. In this era of coronavirus pandemic, we have become more and more reliant on internet. Students are using it for study purposes and working class is using it for work purposes. It has become an fundamental part of our lives. Right from getting a litre of milk to buying a car everything can be done on the internet.
From the initial stages itself, Google started to make its way into our lives slowly but steadily. First of all, after the initial years of struggle it started to acquire new and innovating companies which were going to change the world in the future. Its acquisitions like that of YouTube has been really successful and among all Android has been a revolution. Android has helped it immensely and in return smartphone manufacturers have been able to put a smartphone in everyone’s hand. Google also created some products like Orkut and Gmail which gave people a medium to remain in contact with each other. It’s another product called Google Chrome has been one of the most favourite web browsers among the masses for quite a bit of time and it has continued to improve itself in spite of facing intense competition from the likes of Mozilla Firefox and Microsoft Edge. In 2007, after the launch of Apple iPhone, it started to work on a device which could stand against iPhone and launched Nexus One. In 2010, it did get another unique competition in the form of a tablet computer from Apple iPad which it countered by launching Nexus 7 tablet. In 2012, it also acquired Motorola Mobility through which it launched some good devices like Motorola Moto G smartphones which were and still are quite popular. But later on, it sold Motorola to Lenovo in order to safeguard itself from other hardware manufacturers who considered it unfair that Google had started being a competitor in hardware segment. Later on, it also stopped manufacturing Nexus devices and shifted its focus to Pixel devices. It has also launched Google Assistant which is used to interact with electronic devices. It did also launch some Nest branded electronic devices which are used to remotely control other internet connected device like light bulbs. For quite some time people have also become more health conscious. Due to this Google launched a new category called smartwatch or fitness tracker. This category of devices run on WearOS which is an OS developed by Google to handle wearable devices which can be used to keep ourselves fit. Wearable devices can be like a watch which we can wear while we are outside. After that these devices do record activities of an individual and show them their respective results.
One of the finest products of Google has been Google Maps. We all are using it for our daily commute or to explore new places. Along with it another device which is gaining popularity nowadays is self-driving vehicles, a project being developed by Google. As we are advancing towards a more machine dominant future, it has been a need of the hour that most of the things around us become automated. With the increasing orders on online e-commerce platforms like Amazon and Flipkart, they are trying to deliver products to the consumers faster and in a less cumbersome way, this includes less paperwork and simply delivering the shipments without asking any questions. For all this Amazon and others are testing more automated machines like self-driving cars by which people are able to receive their products with less human interaction and also after this COVID-19 disaster people will take some time to get back to normal situation of an interactive world. This is also helping companies in reducing their expenditure on man power which is required for the time being because companies are not performing at their full capacity as there has been loss of business and as a result many people have lost their jobs also.
From the corporate point of view, Google has been restructured a few times. Most recently in 2019, Larry Page and Sergey Brin stepped down from their role as a CEO of Alphabet Inc which was formed in 2015 as a parent company of Google. Now Sundar Pichai is the CEO of both Google and Alphabet Inc. At last by putting all these things together Google has tried to keep us hooked to our smart devices for almost all our needs and ultimately it is always trying to improve in this competitive world and make our lives better.
By RAUNAK JHA, Mumbai