Google launches second app in China, woos top smartphone market

Google has been trying to expand its operations in China and has launched a dedicated artificial intelligence research hub in Beijing. (Reuters)
Updated 31 May 2018

Google launches second app in China, woos top smartphone market

BEIJING: Alphabet’s Google has launched a file managing tool in several Chinese app stores as it looks for fresh inroads into the world’s biggest smartphone market, where most of the Internet giant’s top products remain banned.
The US firm on Thursday released a China-specific version of ‘Files Go’, a storage management tool for smartphones, the second China-specific app it has released since its flagship services were banned.
The app, which has a small number of users compared to Google’s flagship search and app store products, is also the first it has launched on third-party Chinese app stores including those hosted by Baidu, Xiaomi Technologies and Huawei Culture Co.
China has represented a black hole on Google’s global map since regulators began banning the company’s products in 2010 when it refused to censor results in line with local laws.
Its search engine is banned in the Chinese market along with its app store, email and cloud storage services.
China’s cyber regulators say restrictions on foreign media and Internet platforms are designed to block influences that contravene stability and socialist ideas.
Google has been trying to expand its operations in China and has launched a dedicated artificial intelligence research hub in Beijing, but its return to providing consumer products has been slow amid tightening censorship regulations.
Google has, however, ramped up its China efforts recently. CEO Sundar Pichai has made several visits to the country and has spoken at two Chinese government forums since December.
Last year, Google released its ‘Google Translate’ app in China. It is maintained by Google’s local joint venture.
The ‘Files Go’ app, which helps users free up storage space, has been developed by Google’s Next Billion program that targets developing markets, including India and Indonesia, where there are a large number of people using low-end smartphones.
While Google’s consumer services are largely blocked in China, its Android operating system is used widely by top smartphone vendors, including Xiaomi and Huawei phones.


Proposals to cut expats in Kuwait reviewed by National Assembly committee

Updated 10 August 2020

Proposals to cut expats in Kuwait reviewed by National Assembly committee

  • One of the seven plans submitted by members of parliament calls to set a percentage for each migrant community in the country
  • The Kuwaiti government’s plan calls to replace about 160,000 expat working in the public sector with nationals

DUBAI: Thousands of expats in Kuwait are expected to leave the country as talks over the decision have started between the government and the National Assembly human resources committee.
The government and parliamentary proposals are being reviewed by the committee, national daily Kuwait Times reported.
One of the seven plans submitted by members of parliament calls to set a percentage for each migrant community in the country.
The Kuwaiti government’s plan also calls to replace about 160,000 expat working in the public sector with nationals, but did not provide a timeframe.
The proposal also suggests that about 370,000 expats who show a “negative impact” on the country or are illegal residents can be dismissed by taking short-term measures.
The government added in its plan that “marginal” workers should be reduced by 25 percent. It also expects to lower temporary employment contracts by 30 percent in government jobs.
The government also discussed the massive increase in the expat population in the country between 2005 and 2019, as it went up to 4.42 million. It added that during this time, the citizens’ population increased from 860,000 to 1.335 million.