Google Betting Big On AI, Machine Learning: CEO

by CXOtoday News Desk    Jan 05, 2017

Internet major Google is betting big on artificial intelligence and machine learning in the coming years, its CEO, Sundar Pichai said on Thursday. Speaking to students at IIT-Kharagpur - his alma mater - Pichai said, “AI and advances in machine learning are the big things in the Google Research and Development center.”


Pichai said Google has strengthened focus on Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence, and also highlighted how advances in deep learning algorithms are a core part of what Google has in store for the future.

“We recently launched Google Translate. Using deep learning the translations have improved immensely. We are definitely at a point of inflection and we are investing heavily as a company in this (machine learning and AI),” commented Pichai.  

Pichai also highlighted Google’s recently published paper on how Machine Learning can be used to detect Diabetic retinopathy, a condition which damages the retina due to diabetes. “We can detect it very accurately. This is an early example of the kind of changes that will happen with machine learning,” said the Google CEO.

Pichai also expressed confidence that big global software companies will start emerging from India in the next five to 10 years. Asked on India catching up with China on the digital front, Pichai stressed the goal should be a little different. 

“India will be a global player in digital economy and it will be competitive with any country in the world. There is a timing issue. We are doing well as a country. We need to stay at it. We need a few more years and we will get to it……” he said

“We look forward to cheaper smartphones in India. We at Google want to focus on usage of Internet in rural areas in India. We are big supporters of the Digital India program. We are also working on digitising payments,” he said on the questions raised on Digital India.

Read more: Google CEO Announces Digital Unlocked For Indian SMBs

Earlier this week, on his visit to India, Google has launched Digital Unlocked, a training programme to enable SMBs get online and start using Internet to grow their business. The training is being conducted with FICCI. Pichai announced that over the next three years, 5,000 workshops will be held across 40 Indian cities. The online training comprises a set of 90 self-paced video tutorials, curated specifically for India and will be available free of charge and would be certified by Google. The company also previewed My Business Websites to help businesses to have a rich, mobile-optimised digital presence that will be launched later this year.

Over 3,000 IITians gathered to meet the insitutions most famous alumnus who visited his campus after 23 years. Taking a trip down memory lane he shared some anecdotes and also answered questions by students and spoke about India being a global player when it comes to digital economies. To read more about his speech, you can click on this video.