Google unveils mobile network plans

March 3, 2015 | 11:53

Tags: #advertising #android-pay #google-fibre #google-wallet #mobile-network #mwc-2015 #sundar-pichai #telecommunications

Companies: #google

Google has announced that it is expanding its telecommunications efforts beyond its fibre-optic broadband provision with plans to launch its own mobile network in the near future.

Google's massive profits come from its highly successful advertising programmes, which its other products - from the search engine for which it is known to its Android mobile operating system - serve by generating traffic. With a massive majority market share, however, there are few places for Google to grow - so it's investing in creating its own market. The company has been rolling out high-speed gigabit broadband connections to selected markets in recent years, and now has announced it plans to do the same with experimental mobile networks.

Phys.org reports from the Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona where Google's Sundar Pichai has confirmed the company's mobile plans. 'You will see us in the coming months,' he told attendees, but claimed that 'we don't intend to be a network operator at scale' and was simply approaching the project as an experiment.

The goal, Pichai claimed, is to influence the evolution of the mobile ecosystem, developing innovations which it would like to see and demonstrate them in use in the hope that the major mobile networks follow suit. 'We will do it on a small enough scale that, just like Nexus devices, people see what we are doing and hopefully carrier partners think our ideas are good,' Pichai explained, referring to his company's decision to create own-brand tablet and smartphone devices built to precise specifications by hand-selected third-party companies.

One of the first areas in which Google will be experimenting, Pichai claimed, will be in improving the experience of a roaming user who switches mobile broadband and Wi-Fi connectivity. The company is also looking to develop a mobile payment platform as an expansion of its current Google Wallet, dubbed Android Pay and designed to compete with Apple Pay from its eponymous rival.

Google has not indicated a launch date for its mobile network experiments, beyond saying that the company will announce more 'in the coming months.'
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