Earlier today, Reliance announced that Google is investing $4.5 billion in Jio as part of its recently announced $10 billion India digitization fund. The two companies are also entering into a commercial agreement to jointly develop entry-level affordable smartphones. These devices will come with optimizations to the Android operating system and the Play Store to help smartphones reach more Indians.
Google is said to be rethinking from the ground up how millions more in India can get to be owners of smartphones and benefit. For reference, the majority of people in India still don’t have access to the internet and smartphones. The companies are aiming to break the connectivity and accessibility barriers by optimizing the Android operating system and the Play Store for India.
“The time to increase our commitment to India’s significantly in collaboration with local companies and this partnership with Jio for us is really the first step of this,” Sameer Samat VP of Product Management, Android and Google Play said to ET.
“We want to work with Jio and other leaders in the local ecosystem to ensure that smartphones—together with the apps and services in the Play Store—are within reach for many more Indians across the country. And we believe the pace of Indian innovation means that the experiences we create for India can ultimately be expanded to the rest of the world,” he added.