The US-based search giant Google during its fourth Google for India event, has announced a new initiative Navlekha to help Indians publish their content in regional languages.
As per the official Google blog, the amount of online content in Indian regional languages account for only 1% of what is available in English.
In order to resolve this issue, Google has come up with this new project Navlekha. Under this, a user is provider with a tool that uses AI to render any PDF containing Indian language content into editable text, which helps the publishers create mobile-friendly content.
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The publishers will also be provided with the free web hosting with AdSense support to the regional publishers which will enable them to monetise their content immediately. The users will be receiving training and will also be given a page domain for the first three years.
The company claimed that the project has already began its services with people participating from Delhi and hopes that it would reach out to the other regions from September, 2018
Google’s Other Initiatives For Indian Users
According to January 2017 Google- KPMG report, India can be expected to have nearly 735 Mn Internet users by 2021 and hence Google is trying to undertake projects that help the users.
Furthermore, the user base of local languages will continue to grow at 18% annually to reach 536 Mn in the next four years, compared to the English Internet user base growing at 3% to reach 199 Mn. Hence, local language internet users are expected to account for nearly 75% of India’s Internet user base by 2021.
Earlier, Google has also come up with the Solve For India Program to boost India startups. It has also been attempting to reach rural India with its Internet Saathi initiative and till date 15 Mn women from 150K villages in India have benefitted from the initiative.
Further, in order to eradicate fake news, the company has launched Google News Initiative Training Network in India which aims to train 8,000 journalists in English and other languages.
They have also extended the news initiative to Youtube where the video content will be focused on not only improving the news experience but will also help curb the spread of fake news.
During the event, Google had also announced development of other projects including rebranding to Tez to Google Pay, launch android phones at cheaper rate, partner with Andhra Pradesh to make internet available in secluded areas.
Other than Google, one of the major local player in this segment is Bengaluru-based, self-publishing platform Pratilipi which allows Indian publishers to share their content online in eight regional languages including Hindi, Gujarati, Bengali, Marathi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, and Malayalam.
Then there are also players like PlanetGoGo, an app for content discovery in regional languages, ShabdaNagari, a social networking site in Hindi and Indian regional language social platform ShareChat.