Google Visits Nigeria With Basket Of Promises
Search engine giant, Google has officially visited the most popular black nation on earth.
With internet penetration ballooning every month – 91 million users as at June, the world’s second most profitable company could no longer keep its feet out of Nigeria.
Google’s Chief Executive Officer, Sundar Pichai led a team of other Google’s executives to Nigeria’s commercial nerve centre, Lagos on Thursday.
And then, at an exclusive Google Nigeria event, the tech giant unveiled a bunch of initiatives aimed at driving the development of technology in Africa.Also Read: 'Simplify Taxes, Cut Fees To Grow Tech Sector' - Google Tells Nigeria
There were a bunch of the promises but below are some of the plans the company laid out for Nigeria:
1. A 13,000 Naira Smartphone: Smartphones have become ubiquitous in Nigeria, even cheap but Google, through a partnership with telecom giant, MTN plans to take it a notch higher by introducing a 13,000-naira smartphone that will come with freebies including double data bonuses.
Sometime ago, Google launched a feature that streamlines search results so they load with less data and at high speed, even on 2G networks, reports technology website, Techpoint.ng.
Now, they’re extending that feature to streamline websites you reach from search results, so that they load with 90% less data even on low storage devices, the report said.
2. Google’s Street View Debuts In Lagos: Let's say you have a policeman with eyes all around his head. That is what best describes Google Street View.
On Thursday, Google officially launched its Street View in Lagos with 10,000 kilometers of imagery, including the most important historic roads in the city.
Google said it will add more Nigerian cities in due time, as soon as they can get permission from state governments.
Agberos beware, Google is watching!
3. Google Wants You To Dump Your TV: Of course, you know Google owns YouTube. And now, they really want you to dump your TV because they have launched a less data-hungry YouTube called YouTbeGo in Nigeria.
With YouTubeGo, you can watch your favourite videos offline. Users can download videos offline and share them offline and without data.
You can sign up to get notified when it becomes available.
4. Funding for African Startups: This is the juicy part for technology entrepreneurs. With its Launchpad Accelerator programme, Google plans to provide $3 million, 905 million Naira in equity-free funding.
This means they will give this money to startups without asking for anything in return including shares.
Apart from the funding, they will also provide training, that is, mentor-ship, working space and access to expert advisers to more than 60 African startups over three years.
In addition, the Launchpad Accelerator programme will be setting up base in Lagos, in collaboration with the Co-creation Hub.
First it was that Facebook boy, Zuckerberg; now its Google - is there something they know that we can't see?