Google will invest up to $1 billion in partnership with India’s Airtel to provide affordable access to smartphones to over a billion Indians and speed up use of cloud-based computing for business.
The investment, announced on Friday, will help India’s small businesses adopt digital tools as India works to adopt digital education, payments and e-commerce amid the pandemic.
As part of the “Google for India Digitization Fund” launched in 2020, Google will pay $700 million to acquire a 1.28 percent stake in Airtel.
It is also committing up to $300 million for commercial agreements over the next five years, Airtel said in a statement.
The companies also plan to jointly develop software for 5G and other standards, it said.