Google invested in Jio Platforms

The goal is to flood the local market with cheap smartphones

Google is investing $ 4.5 billion in Indian tech and telecom company Jio Platforms. Among other things, the two companies plan to develop a cheap smartphone for the Indian market together.

The US search engine giant will acquire a 7.7 percent stake in Jio Platforms after the deal, which is largely owned by Indian conglomerate Reliance. Last year, the group brought together all digital services, such as chat, music and movie apps, into its subsidiary, which also serves a large part of the Indian telephony market.

Google and Jio Platforms announced to come up with an “entry-level” smartphone, with a modified version of Android operating system. That new model should give more Indians access to a smartphone and all associated digital options.

Jio Platforms has previously attracted a lot of interest from large American companies. Facebook bought a 10 percent stake in the company for $ 5.7 billion earlier this year. Chip makers Qualcomm and Intel also invested money in the company. They hope that this will enable them to benefit from the strong growth of the Indian digital services market, where more and more people are accessing the internet for the first time.

At the shareholders’ meeting of Reliance Industries, CEO Mukesh Ambani announced a number of ambitious plans for Jio on Wednesday. For example, he wants to use a streaming platform that brings together various well-known video channels, such as Netflix and Disney +. He also wants to set up a 5G network in India with home-grown technology.

Ambani, the richest man in Asia, according to business magazine Forbes, took over the business empire Reliance after his father died. Where this conglomerate has its origins in the oil and refining sector, Ambani now wants to transform it into a forerunner in the digital economy.

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