Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, countries are forced to put a state of lockdown, which in turn is pushing employees to work from home. This new change in the lifestyle has led to an increase in the usage of video calling and video conferencing apps. Amid this deadly crisis, Google has announced that the company has witnessed a surge in the usage of its video conferencing app — Hangouts Meet.
According to the CEO of Google Cloud, Thomas Kurian, Hangouts Meet has witnessed a 60% increase in usage in the past couple of months.
Kurian’s recent blog stated that “As more and more businesses are transforming towards connecting an at-home workforce to maintain productivity, we’ve seen surges in the use of Google Meet, our video conferencing product, at a rate we’ve never witnessed before. Over the last few weeks, Meet’s day-over-day growth surpassed 60%, and as a result, its daily usage is more than 25 times what it was in January.”
Additionally, Google has also rolled out its advanced Hangouts Meet app available for free to all its G Suite and G Suite for Education customers globally. In addition to that, the company has also rolled out its Meet Hardware available in additional markets, which includes South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia and South Africa.
Besides, the company is also offering their portfolio of Google Cloud learning resources, including their extensive catalogue of training courses, hands-on labs on Qwiklabs, and interactive Cloud OnAir webinars at no cost until April 30. Anyone can gain cloud experience through hands-on labs no matter where they are—and learn how to prototype an app, build prediction models, and more—at their own pace.
Google is also working with governmental organisations around the world on projects such as developing AI-based chat technology to help overtasked agencies respond more quickly to citizen requests. It also helps in bolstering government websites that get critical information to the public with a free content delivery network (CDN) and load-balancing services; and providing services and tools to track the spread of the virus.
The company has been doing reasonably good in recent times. According to reports, there was a 70% surge in the usage of the group video calling feature of Facebook Messenger, and also the voice and video calls on WhatsApp have more than doubled YoY in the places most impacted by the coronavirus.