July 31, 2015

Search Ads on Google Play and new app promo tools roll out to advertisers and developers

[Cross posted from the Official AdWords Blog]

People turn to their phones billions of times a day for I want-to-know, I want-to-go, I want-to-do, and I want-to-buy moments. And in these intent-rich moments, they often turn to apps to get what they need. Runners may search for a “mileage tracker” app as they start training for a marathon, foodies may look for “restaurant” apps to check out the trendiest new places in town, and frequent fliers may search for “top games” to play before a long flight. In fact, search is one of the biggest drivers of app installs in the Play Store.

That’s why we’re investing in new ways to help people discover apps with Search Ads on Google Play and innovating on new technologies to simplify campaign management and improve measurement for developers.

They’ve arrived: Search Ads on Google Play
Search Ads on Google Play will begin to roll out today to all advertisers and developers who use Search app install campaigns on AdWords.



Google Play reaches more than 1 billion people on Android devices in more than 190 countries. With such an extensive reach, Search Ads on Google Play can provide consumers new ways to discover apps that they otherwise might have missed and help developers drive more awareness of their apps.

Companies like Booking.com and Nordeus are already extending their app promotion strategy to include showing ads on the Play Store.



Tomislav Mihajlović, CMO of Nordeus shared that, "Search has already been a key component of our app promotion strategy to reach high-quality users. With new Search Ads on Google Play, we have an even bigger opportunity to connect with people in the moments they’re looking for new apps to download. We are already seeing significantly more app installs from Search with the addition of Google Play inventory for our game Top Eleven.”

Improved conversion tracking for Android
As we expand the opportunities for developers to promote their apps, we’re also committed to providing conversion tracking tools that work seamlessly across channels and align with whichever measurement solution a developer chooses to use. That’s why we’re introducing Android first app opens, a new conversion tracking solution that measures when a user first opens an app after clicking on an ad and completing an Android app install. In addition to providing app conversion tracking across Search, Display and YouTube, this new solution also allows developers to better align the conversion volume they see in AdWords with the data they see in a third-party measurement solution. First app opens are the standard conversion type for third-party solutions, so we’re working with key partners like Tune, AppsFlyer, Kochava, Adjust and Apsalar to ensure data consistency and give developers the freedom to use reporting and optimization features across AdWords and third-party solutions of their choice.


An even easier way to scale your app install ads across Google networks
In a few weeks, Universal App Campaigns will make it even easier to promote your apps on Google Play and across all Google properties, including: Search, YouTube, the AdMob in-app network, and the 2M+ sites on the Google Display Network. Simply let us know what your ad will say, who you want to reach, your budget and target cost-per-install, and we’ll do the rest.

Improved conversion tracking for Android
As we expand the opportunities for developers to promote their apps, we’re also committed to providing conversion tracking tools that work seamlessly across channels and align with whichever measurement solution a developer chooses to use. That’s why we’re introducing Android first app opens, a new conversion tracking solution that measures when a user first opens an app after clicking on an ad and completing an Android app install. In addition to providing app conversion tracking across Search, Display and YouTube, this new solution also allows developers to better align the conversion volume they see in AdWords with the data they see in a third-party measurement solution. First app opens are the standard conversion type for third-party solutions, so we’re working with key partners like Tune, AppsFlyer, Kochava, Adjust and Apsalar to ensure data consistency and give developers the freedom to use reporting and optimization features across AdWords and third-party solutions of their choice.


An even easier way to scale your app install ads across Google networks
In a few weeks, Universal App Campaigns will make it even easier to promote your apps on Google Play and across all Google properties, including: Search, YouTube, the AdMob in-app network, and the 2M+ sites on the Google Display Network. Simply let us know what your ad will say, who you want to reach, your budget and target cost-per-install, and we’ll do the rest.

As the apps ecosystem continues to grow, we’re dedicated to creating products that help developers get their apps to the users who will love them. From adding search ads to Google Play, to improving Android conversion tracking and simplifying campaign management with Universal App Campaigns, we hope these new tools will bring even more success to our app developer community.

Posted by Surojit Chatterjee, Director, Product Management, Mobile Search Ads

Minimum purchase price for apps on Google Play reduced in India

India continues to be a major growth opportunity for developers to reach new users on Google Play. We’ve heard feedback from you — our global developer community — that you’d like more flexibility when choosing how much to charge for your apps and games in India.

Starting today, developers can reduce the price of their premium titles and in-app products, to as low as Rs. 10.

You can lower the price of your apps and games right away by visiting the Google Play Developer Console and clicking on “Pricing & Distribution” or “In-app Products” on the left menu.

We hope this additional lower price tier will allow you to reach more users in India and help you continue to build successful businesses on Google Play.

Posted by Alistair Pott, Product Manager, Google Play

July 30, 2015

Get Instant Translations in Hindi with Google Translate

[Cross posted from the Official Google blog]

Today, we’re updating the Google Translate app—expanding instant visual translation to Hindi, as well as 19 other languages. With this update, you can instantly see English text transform live onto your screen into Hindi, plus 26 other languages. No Internet connection or cell phone data needed.

To try it out, go to the Google Translate app, set “English” along with Hindi, and click the camera button; you'll be prompted to download a small (~2 MB) language pack for the language before this feature works. Currently, translations only work one way from English to Hindi.   


We’re also making real-time voice translations a lot faster and smoother. Find out more about today’s update here.
Have a natural, smoother conversation —even with a slower mobile network
Slow mobile networks can make it challenging to access many online tools - so if you live in an area with unreliable mobile networks, our other update today is for you. In addition to instant visual translation, we’ve also improved our voice conversation mode, so it’s even faster and more natural on slow networks.

These updates are coming to both Android and iOS, rolling out over the next few days.

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Translate Community helps us get better every day
We’re also continuously working to improve the quality of the translations themselves and to add new languages. A year ago this week, we launched Translate Community, a place for multilingual people from anywhere in the world to provide and correct translations. Thanks to the millions of language lovers who have already pitched in—more than 100 million words so far!—we've been updating our translations for over 90 language pairs, and plan to update many more as our community grows.

We’ve still got lots of work to do: more than half of the content on the Internet is in English, but only around 20% of the world’s population speaks English. Today’s updates knock down a few more language barriers, helping you communicate better and get the information you need.

Posted by Barak Turovsky, Product Lead, Google Translate

July 27, 2015

Welcoming Lava to the Android One family

The goal of Android One is to ensure that more people have high-quality, up-to-date smartphones — and today we move another step towards that goal by welcoming Lava International Limited, one of the fastest growing mobile handset companies in India. Lava’s first Android One smartphone, the Lava Pixel V1, is now available in all leading national retail stores, multi-brand outlets and online at Flipkart.com starting at Rs 11,349*. 

The Lava Pixel V1 is a stunning phone, available in two striking colors — White-Silver and Gold.
The 5.5 inch wide HD screen is great for watching videos and the slim design packs 2GB of RAM and 32GB Internal memory (further expandable up to 32GB) for all of your favorite movies and music.



Of course, the Lava Pixel V1 also comes with all of the benefits of an Android One phone. First, it runs the latest version of pure Android (Lollipop 5.1), which provides up to 2x better performance and extended battery features. Second, it automatically gets upgraded to the next version of Android (according to Lava's schedule), so your phone stays fast and responsive over time.


Less than one year ago, Google introduced the Android One program in India. Since then, partners have helped to bring Android One to eight additional countries. We’ve been thrilled and humbled by both the progress and the work that’s left to do. But we look forward to continuing our work with partners on Android One and in the Android ecosystem more broadly to ensure that users have great phones with the latest Android innovation.
* The pricing may differ from seller to seller in offline retail stores

Posted by Caesar Sengupta, VP, Product Management

July 22, 2015

Cloud + mobile = supercharged growth for small businesses

India’s small businesses aren’t small when it comes to economic impact. They employ over 106 million people, make up almost a quarter of the workforce, and contribute close to half of the nation’s manufacturing output. As the country looks to drive growth, create jobs, and increase exports as part of the Digital India initiative, we teamed up with Deloitte to see how cloud and mobile tools could help small businesses support these national goals, and the results are striking.


The new report, “Connected Small Business — Unlocking India’s digital potential” finds that businesses that use cloud and mobile tools are more profitable, more innovative, export more, and have happier, more productive staff. Compared to offline businesses, those that use cloud and mobile tools grow 27% annually, are four times more innovative, and are 65% more likely to be exporting.


They’re also job creators — 84% said they’re hiring. With employees at these digitally engaged businesses six times more satisfied with their work and nine times more collaborative, it’s clear that technology decisions are impacting more than the bottom line: they also create happier, more productive employees.


As someone who talks with businesses about how Google Apps for Work has helped their businesses grow, go global, or connect and collaborate with their employees more easily, these findings put some numbers to the great stories I hear everyday.


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Freshdesk employees collaborate on tablets at their Chennai office


Take software startup Freshdesk for example. Founded in Chennai in 2010 with eight staff, they now employ over 450 people and have over 59 million end users — 90% of which come from outside of India. Google Apps has supercharged their team’s ability to meet this rapid growth. With Google Drive, employees work together on documents in real time from anywhere, on any device. While video conferencing with Google Hangouts helps the team stay in touch regardless of timezone or location. 

Or take Bangalore delivery business SpoonJoy: founded in 2014, they now deliver around 3,000 healthy and delicious meals to hungry Bangaloreans everyday. Their team uses Google Apps and estimates that cloud and mobile tools enable them to open their business in a new area in a third of the time it would take without these tools.
It’s not just startups or technology businesses that are reaping these digital dividends. Logistics company Pickingo estimates that having real-time access to delivery information with cloud and mobile tools has increased its orders by around 15%. Manufacturing company EMCO attributes 30% of their business growth to the adoption of digital technology.
Companies that are able to collaborate across teams and even continents are the ones unlocking great ideas that are succeeding in India today. These businesses understand that being digitally engaged goes beyond having a website. They’re enabling their staff to work from anywhere on any device, and are making important business information accessible to them. With India focused on supercharging economic growth and employment, the winning formula could just be the greater adoption of cloud and mobile tools by the country's small businesses.

Posted by Mohit Pande, Country Manager - India, Google for Work

July 9, 2015

Google India’s Code to Learn Contest becomes part of Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan

With the increasing proliferation of Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) in our life, a basic understanding of Computer Science is becoming an essential part of Education. At Google we are always endeavouring to promote fun and interesting ways to learn computer programming and Code to Learn Contest is one such initiative. Describing the initiative, Google Fellow, Dr Guha said that Programming is not just about computer science. It is a set of tools for kids to explore new ideas, virtually build new things, experience the frustration of things not working and finally the exquisite joy of creating something new from scratch. Programming democratizes the education of innovative thinking.

Code to Learn initiative has been included in the Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan - National Innovation Mission. The contest enables students from classes 5 to 10 to develop software projects on subjects of their choice, without writing even one line of programming code! To develop their projects, students can use Scratch and App Inventor - both tools have been developed at MIT. These tools make programming very easy and students are able to tell stories, make animations, build games and create Android apps in a quick and intuitive manner.

The Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan  is the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD)  flagship initiative. The program aims at fostering a spirit of inquiry and creativity, apart from inculcating a  love for Science and Math among children. Code to Learn will help kids effectively deploy technology and enhance their interest in Computer Science. The Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan will help in creating a framework for innovation and research in school learning. This will be essential for developing a ‘Digital First’ generation, ready to reap the rewards of Government of India’s Digital India Programme of which Google is a proud partner. The Code to Learn initiative will help in translating Prime Minister Modi’s vision of making India a world leader in digital technologies for it will help kids effectively deploy technology and enhance their interest in Computer Science.

On the occasion of launch of the mission, the Union Ministry for Human Resource Development, Mrs Smriti Irani said that she was grateful to have Google as a partner in Rashtriya Avishkar Abhiyan for enthusing children about coding and giving an opportunity to winners of the contest to engage with latest technologies and Google engineers at Google campus.

Code to Learn Contest was launched by former President of India Dr A P J Abdul Kalam.  He hoped that the mission would ignite the young minds and help develop love for knowledge from an early age and cement India’s leadership in this domain.

We invite school students in classes 5 to 10 enrolled at any school in India to visit the contest website to register for Google India Code to Learn Contest 2015.  Note that due to age restrictions, only parents or legal guardians can register for the contest on behalf of the students.

Submissions are now open at http://g.co/code2learn or http://g.co/codetolearn

Posted by Chetan Krishnaswamy, Head of Public Policy

July 4, 2015

Digitising India - One woman at a time with ‘Internet Saathi’

While women are making rapid progress in adoption of Internet in urban areas of India, women in rural India are getting left behind. Today only 12% of Internet users in rural India are women as per iCube 2014 report. There is a need to address this challenge and empower women in rural India through training and programs that can truly transform their lives. And we are delighted to share the launch of an exciting new partnership with Tata Trusts and Intel to launch an Internet literacy campaign for women in rural India.


The new initiative titled “Internet Saathi” will aim at enabling women in rural areas to use the Internet and benefit from it in their daily lives. We hope that this joint initiative will help us to bridge the technology gender divide, which currently puts women in rural India at risk of getting left behind as the world around them benefits from Internet.


We announced this in Mumbai on 3rd July with our  partners, NGOs and media. The launch was also graced by Mr. Ratan Tata, Chairman, Tata Trusts who lauded the efforts of companies engaged in bringing technology to all sections of society to transform the nation. The initiative will provide basic training on the usage and benefits of Internet for women through specially designed Internet cycle carts that will visit villages to provide easy access to women.


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At the launch of Internet Saathi
From L to R: Sandeep Menon (Country Head Marketing Google India), R Venkataramanan (Executive Trustee, Tata Trusts), Rajan Anandan (VP & Managing Director, Google SEA & India), Debjani Ghosh (Managing Director, Intel South Asia), Ratan Tata (Chairman, Tata Trusts)

Built on the back of a cycle, the Cart is modeled on India's traditional distribution system that is used to carry everything from ice-cream to industrial supplies. The operator or the "Internet Saathi" would be akin to the village postman who used to be the single point contact for the village with the outside world both in terms of information as well as communication. Tata Trusts, with its well spread on ground NGOs network, will manage the on-ground rollout with its partners whereas Google will invest in providing the Internet-enabled Carts and the training content.


The  initiative will kick off with 1000 such carts starting from Gujarat, Rajasthan and Jharkhand and will be rolled out across the country eventually reaching out to over 4500 villages covering 5 lakh women across rural India over the next eighteen months.  


The internet Cart would be available in the village for a minimum of two days every week for over a period of four to six months. It will create awareness and also try to ensure that adequate training is provided to use the devices till women are confident of using the devices independently.


Intel who has been a long-term partner of Google India’s Helping Women Get Online initiative will also support the initiative. This new initiative will help us to extend our helping women get online outreach to rural India. Since the launch of this initiative, Google has directly trained over 1.5 million women on the basics of the Internet.

Posted by Sandeep Menon, Country Marketing Director, Google India