Sundar Pichai, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Technology giant announced an investment of Rs 75,000 ($10 Billion) in India, over a period of 5 to 7 years under Google for India Digitisation Fund.  

Ahead of the announcement, PM Narendra Modi held a video conference with Pichai and his other senior colleagues.  

The investments will be done through a mix of equity investments, partnerships, operations, infrastructure and ecosystem investments. Google for India Digitisation Fund adds to the list of initiatives already undertaken by Google in India. 

Some of the initiatives are Internet Sathi – rural awareness programme, Google Pay – UPI enabled online payment app and now discontinued Google Station – a program that rolled out free Wi-Fi in more than 400 railway stations in India and “thousands” of other public places.  

The investment will be focused on 4 key areas.

1. Enabling affordable access and information to every Indian in their own language 
2. Building new products and services relevant to India’s unique needs 
3. Empowering businesses as they continue to embark in digital transformation 
4. Leveraging technology and Artificial Intelligence for social good in areas like healthcare, education and agriculture.  

The investment plan also includes “focus on bringing more high-quality low-cost smartphones to enable Internet access”. But this is not the first time, earlier Google had launched an initiative called Android one with mobile companies like Karbbon, lava, Micromax, which didn’t do well because of the availability of cheaper Chinese devices in the market.

Earlier this year in January, Inc chief Jeff Bezos had announced an investment of $ 1 Billion. In April, Facebook announced an investment of $ 5.7 Billion in Reliance’s Jio Platforms Limited.  

Since the central government’s move to curb Chinese investments in the Indian market and ban on 59 mobile apps, this fund will help fill in space.