Google China Stories January 29, 2020

In recent days, the global tech industry has been responding to the coronavirus. Google today announced that it’s temporarily shutting down offices in China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, while instituting travel restrictions.

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Google China Stories July 17, 2019

After stirring up controversy over the past several months, Google has apparently stated to the US Government that it has terminated its Dragonfly search project for the Chinese market.

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Google China Stories March 27, 2019

The U.S. military and other Washington officials are still upset over Google pulling out of Project Maven last year. However, another sticking point was Google’s work — at the time — on censored Search in China. That criticism recently reemerged with Sundar Pichai meeting President Trump and other top military brass today to allay fears about Google’s relationship with China, especially in regards to AI.

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Google China Stories December 17, 2018

Sundar Pichai told Congress last week that Google has “no plans to launch Search in China.” In an interview after the hearing, the CEO suggested other non-Search areas that Google could explore in the country, like healthcare. A new report today reveals that Project Dragonfly is “effectively ended.”

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Google China Stories December 11, 2018

Sundar Pichai testified in front of the House Judiciary Committee this morning during a 3.5 hour session that ranged from accusations of Search result bias, interference by foreign powers, and more. One area that Congress was particularly critical on was China and Project Dragonfly. In an interview later in the day, the Google CEO suggested other areas in China, instead of search, that the company could look into.

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Google China Stories November 27, 2018

Over the past year, Googlers have protested military contracts and the handling of sexual misconduct by management to varying levels of success. Some employees are now taking aim at Project Dragonfly, Google’s rumored search engine in China that would abide by local censorship laws.

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Google China Stories October 15, 2018

For the past several weeks, there has been an internal and external uproar about Project Dragonfly, Google’s rumored attempt to return to China with a censored search engine and other products. CEO Sundar Pichai this evening gave his first public comments on the matter, calling Dragonfly an exploration at what Google in China could look like after eight years.

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Google China Stories August 17, 2018

A report that Google is planning to relaunch its search engine in China, giving in to government demands for a censored version, has understandably triggered a huge amount of opposition to the idea – not least from its own employees.

Google CEO Sundar Pichai and co-founder Sergey Brin have responded by saying that while they are looking at how to do more business in China, the company is ‘not close’ to relaunching its search engine there …

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Google China Stories August 16, 2018

Internally, Google is known for fostering a very open work environment that places a great deal of trust on employees. That means Googlers can affect a great deal of change as evidenced by the company backing out of Project Maven. A new petition provides insight to the employee reaction against Dragonfly — a censored search engine for China — that many believe is contradictory to Google’s principles.

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Google China Stories August 3, 2018

This week has seen a flurry of developments about Google planning to return to the Chinese market with an AI-powered news app, followed by a self-censoring Search service. The company’s ambitions also reportedly extend to bringing G Suite to China via partnerships with local cloud companies.

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Google China Stories August 2, 2018

Multiple publications have since confirmed that Google is planning to launch a Search app that would comply with China’s censorship laws. A new report today details that Google is also working on a news-aggregation app that would similarly self-censor content in a sign of grander ambitions for the country. Meanwhile, since details first came to light yesterday, Google employees have been fiercely arguing the issue.

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Google China Stories August 1, 2018

According to a report this morning from The Intercept, Google is planning to re-launch its search engine in China. Coming back into the world’s most populous country, however, comes with a serious condition: Google will comply with demands from Chinese officials to censor topics it deems undesirable.

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Google China Stories July 18, 2018

Over the past year, Google has been slowly returning to China via partnerships, investments, and apps. The latest is not a standalone application, but rather a drawing mini game for WeChat where machine learning plays a major role.

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Google China Stories June 21, 2018

Earlier this week, Google announced a $550 million strategic partnership with China’s JD․com to work together on e-commerce. A new report today suggests that there is more to the deal, with Google interested in also using it to sell consumer hardware in China.

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Google China Stories June 17, 2018

In recent months, Google has been making inroads back into the Chinese market through various deals and investments. The latest involves a strategic partnership with JD․com — China’s second largest e-commerce company — to the tune of $550 million.

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Google China Stories May 30, 2018

Earlier this week, Google officially launched its mobile augmented reality platform in China via a partnership with Xiaomi. Today, the company is continuing this return to the populous market by releasing Files Go via four local app stores.

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Google China Stories May 28, 2018

After launching this February, Google’s platform for mobile augmented reality hit version 1.2 and received a number of new features at I/O 2018. Many flagship devices from the top OEMs feature it, but Google is now working with Xiaomi to make it available in China where its services are traditionally blocked.

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Google China Stories January 19, 2018

From pushing artificial intelligence research and machine learning tools to local investments, recent weeks have seen a flurry of Google developments in China. The latest has the company partnering with WeChat developer Tencent in a patent cross-licensing deal, as well as promising to collaborate on future technology developments.

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Google China Stories January 16, 2018

Late last year, we learned that Google is bolstering its Shanghai hardware team tasked with overseeing manufacturing. A new report today reveals that the company has moved into an office in Shenzhen to possibly further expand its hardware capabilities.

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Google China Stories December 12, 2017

Bolstering its status as an AI first company, Google has opened machine learning research labs around the world in recent years. The latest is the Google AI China Center headquartered in Beijing.

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Google China Stories December 29, 2014

china

Update: The FT reports that access has been restored for now at least, with a slight pickup in Google’s stats appearing to confirm.

China has tightened its firewall blockade of Google services, reports Re/code and the WSJ, with email apps no longer able to access Gmail via IMAP, POP3 or SMTP. While web access to Gmail has been blocked since June – believed related to the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre – users had remained able to access mail using email apps like Apple Mail and Outlook until Friday …  expand full story

Google China Stories July 15, 2013

Google’s head of (dwindling) business in China leaves after six years

TNW reports that Dr John Liu, Google’s head of business in China since 2006, is leaving the company.

Liu — who earned his doctorate from Tekniske University in Denmark — will leave in August having presided over a period of great change for Google in China, which included the Internet giant’s controversial exit from the country in 2010 following allegations that the Chinese government hacked into email accounts belonging to activists.

Liu took on the role when Google launched its controversial China-based google.cn search-engine, which was subject to censorship by the Chinese government. This was China’s condition for allowing Google to operate in the country. Following alleged hacking of Google accounts belonging to political activists in the country, Google announced that it would be reviewing its operations in China, and soon afterwards redirected its search traffic there to Hong Kong …

As a result, Google’s share of the search market in China fell to just two percent, with very limited additional operations in web services and mobile ads.

Google issued a short statement confirming Liu’s departure:

After nearly 6 years leading our China business, Dr. John Liu has decided to pursue other opportunities. Dr. Liu has been instrumental to developing Google’s business in China and we are grateful for his contributions. We will miss him and wish him the best of luck.

Scott Beaumont, responsible for Google’s partnerships in Europe, is taking on the China role from next month.

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