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Alphabet's Google is forging a cloud partnership with India's Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd to offerings as it plans to launch 5G services.

At the 44th Reliance annual general meeting (AGM) on Thursday, Ambani announced the company’s plans to upgrade the existing 2G users to a better network through an affordable 4G smartphone – Google Next, that the company is developing in partnership with Google. He also spoke about the telco’s plans to move to 5G in the near future.

“Jio is uniquely positioned to quickly and seamlessly upgrade to 5G. To develop a 5G ecosystem, we are working with global partners to develop a range of 5G devices. Jio is not just working to make India 2G-mukt, but also 5G-yukt,” Ambani said.

“In spite of COVID, Jio sustained its track record of robust performance. Jio became the first operator outside China to cross 400 million mobile subscribers in a single country. Jio is today the world’s 2nd largest mobile data carrier handling over 630 crores GBs a month. This is 45 percent growth in data consumption in the last year alone a testament to the rapid pace at which India is digitizing,” he added.

During the meeting, Google CEO Sundar Pichai said the tech giant will collaborate with Jio to provide its cloud services. “At a time when so many aspects of our lives and work are moving online, it’s even more important to make technology accessible and helpful for everyone. This goal is at the heart of our partnership with Reliance Jio. Our vision was to bring affordable access to information for Indians in their own language, to build new products and services for India’s unique needs, and empower businesses with technology,” Pichai noted.

He further said that the vision will start with a new, affordable, Jio smartphone, created with Google highlighting the newly announced smartphone in partnership JioPhone Next, which will help users access the internet for the first time.

“A new 5G partnership between Google Cloud and Jio will help more than a billion Indians connect to faster internet, support businesses in digital transformation, and lay the foundation for next phase of India’s digitization. We are proud to play a part in India’s next wave of technological innovation. Helping to connect 1.3 billion Indians to the opportunities the internet creates is meaningful to us at Google and certainly to me personally,” Pichai said.

“This partnership is a landmark for us. It's a landmark for the 5g communications industry, because the leading company is deploying its entire network on our Cloud. And it's a broad partnership because it involves other parts like retail, e-commerce, etc,” said the Indian origin CEO of Google Cloud Thomas Kurian.

The JioPhone Next will launch on September 10 on the occasion of Ganesh Chaturthi.

Reliance CEO Mukesh Ambani also spoke about its partnership with Microsoft. With Microsoft, we have operationalized an initial 10 MW capacity of JIO-AZURE Cloud Datacentres in Jamnagar and Nagpur. We are currently onboarding the initial group of pilot customers,” Ambani said.