Google made it amply clear why it’s focusing hard on India at its grand GoogleForIndia Event last year. This year, the company reiterated its commitment and sentiment for India with the launch of a slew of India specific products.

Here are the primary highlights:

YouTube Go

YouTube Go is a new app that’s more of an extension of YouTube Offline that was added to the main app last year. You can preview videos before you download or watch them. And in case you do want to download them, the app is upfront about how much data a particular quality video would cost.

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Again, this isn’t vastly different from YouTube Offline. Indian get to try it first. You can sign-up using your mobile phone number or email Id to get notified when it finally goes live.

You can save videos and web pages for later in Chrome too

Apart from YouTube, you can also save web pages, music and videos for later that you come across while browsing on the Google Chrome for later. If your connection drops in between, Chrome will resume download whenever you can access the internet.

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You can also access all your downloads under a single tab. Indian users shall get Downloads with the next Chrome update.

Google will also add personalized suggestions on the new tab page by the end of this year.

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Economical Play store 

Google Play store is also getting 2G Friendly.

  • Fast browsing – Popular parts of Playstore are preloaded on WiFi so the browsing is faster when you are on a slow connection
  • Wait for WiFi Option- This feature lets you postpone App download till you are connected to a WiFi network.

These features will be available for Indian users starting today.

Chrome for Android can trim videos

Google Chrome for Android can now compress MP4 videos and that could help you save up to 67 percent user data. When you are on a slow connection, Data Saver mode will optimize HTTP websites to their essentials, allowing you to save up to 90 percent data and access 2x browsing speeds.

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Google Assistant is learning Hindi

Google Assistant, which is a more intelligent version of Google Now (or at least it’s trying to be) will be able to converse in Hindi by the end of the year.

The new assistant debuted in India last week packaged within messaging app Allo and will soon be able to switch between English and Hindi.

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WiFi Stations

WiFi station is a new Google initiative that aims to deliver fast internet to everyone. This is an extension of Google’s and RailTel’s Public WiFi project where more than 100 major Railway Stations were connected to the Internet.

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Google now wants to extend these WiFi Hotspots to any public place possible across the globe.

Why India is a priority?

India is the fastest growing internet market in the world and is expected to attain 650 million users by 2020. Out of these, 400 Million would consume local content. But these sheer numbers aren’t what have solicited Google’s undivided attention. It’s the nature of the market.

Most users in India access internet from their smartphones, unlike in the West. Thus, making their lives simpler will help Google develop solutions that can be used to make the entire internet more mobile friendly, which in turn, should help convince more users worldwide to use Mobile internet more often.

Google can develop solutions for India and apply them worldwide. Just like it did with YouTube Offline and Maps Offline.

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