By the time we arrived at Google’s Gurgaon office, Sundar Pichai’s elevation as the search giant’s new CEO was the day’s biggest news. Pichai’s meteoric rise would have inspired many of the 25 delegates, who made their way to the Google India headquarters despite being delayed by the infamous Gurgaon traffic.
We were greeted by Nitin Bawankule, who is Google’s industry director for the e-commerce business.
The sunlit conference room, further brightened by giant LED screens, provided the perfect setting for a presentation on ‘Internet, Now and Next.’
Bawankule’s presentation revolved around the raging debate of going ‘app-only’. Is it time for consumer internet startups to junk the desktop and move all transactions to the mobile platform? The presentation dissected internet users into various categories and gave deep insights on the behavioral patterns of the Indian internet user.
Soon after the presentation ended, Bawankule was bombarded with questions ranging from the merits/demerits of ‘mobile only’ to diverse topics such as net neutrality.
He also spoke about how Google is trying to get more businesses and consumers to use the internet. He was particularly kicked about Google initiatives such as ‘Helping Women Get Online’ and the Great Indian Shopping Festival (GOSF).
The 30-minute presentation was concluded with a group photograph.