Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt capped off his private trip to North Korea with a stop in Beijing late last week to meet with Chinese mobile application developers, according to The People’s Daily:
Duncan Clark, chairman of market research company BDA China Ltd, said that Schmidt’s visit to China was incidental, after his visit to the DPRK.
However, Clark added that “both Google China’s R&D presence in Beijing and its massive influence on the smartphone market through Android still give it a lot of heft here” despite the fact that local rival Baidu Inc has won the upper hand in recent times. Google’s Android is the world’s most widely used smartphone operating system.
Faced with a declining market share in China, Google is pushing into the mobile sector,trying to generate revenues from its mobile advertising products, which enable ads tobe shown on mobile applications, mobile search results and online videos.
John Liu, corporate vice-president of Google China, said earlier the mobile ad business is the company’s fastest-growing business in the country.
Meanwhile, the cat-and-mouse game with Chinese authorities over web freedoms in China continues. Google recently cancelled a search filter notification feature which tipped off users to banned or risky keywords, prompting some to claim that the Internet giant has given up the fight against Chinese government censorship. While activist groups such as GreatFire.org have expressed disappointment with Google, The Economist tries to put the move in perspective:
Fair enough, but a question comes to mind. Why should Google be buckling under now? Some see crassly commercial motives, supposing that the firm has stopped crying foul on censorship in order to woo back the Chinese government on behalf of its business interests. Such folk observe that Google has recently announced a tie up with Qihoo 360 Technology, a Chinese
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