Plans to grow the Philippine digital economy, culture, and the internet revealed
MANILA — Google ushered its fifth anniversary in the Philippines with a stronger commitment to contribute to the country’s digital, economic, and cultural growth. Ken Lingan, Google Philippines Country Manager, announced that Google will put its efforts towards growing the country’s digital economy, culture, and the internet.
“Every Filipino needs to be fully equipped in their role as drivers of our country’s growth. As we celebrate our fifth anniversary, we look at the collaborations we can make with different sectors, institutions, and all Filipinos so we can maximize the internet to help us build an even greater Philippines,” Ken said. “Making the internet optimal for use is a persistent challenge but together, we can harness its power to create opportunities and unlock our country’s full potential.
Businesses thriving online
To stimulate its economic contributions, Google is increasing its efforts to help micro, small, and medium (MSMEs) enterprises boost their visibility and thrive online. According to Ken, empowering MSMEs online will encourage them to take part in the projected growth of e-commerce in the Philippines.
A TEMASEK report released in 2016 projects that Philippine e-commerce will grow from 5 billion to 9.5 billion dollars in 2025. The report also predicts an 18% annual growth in the number of people buying goods and services online.
“We are reaching out more to both public and private sectors to find out how our tools and programs can help them achieve their goals. By working more closely with the government and businesses, we believe we will be able to push the country further to become a powerhouse economy,” Ken said.
Google is looking at working with the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) so customers can easily find the Filipino businesses and services they are looking for. Google My Business, a free online tool, will be key to meeting this objective. Entrepreneurs can use Google My Business to share relevant information such as location, business hours, and contact details.
Considering the number of searches for phone numbers, addresses, and business hours of government offices, Google also calls on the government to share relevant information online through Google My Business. This will help Filipinos know more about the government services they need.
Celebrating Filipinos’ best
A nationwide campaign celebrating Philippine tourism and culture will make its debut this year. This campaign, where the online tool Local Guides will play a major role, allows Filipinos to share knowledge and grow content highlighting the Philippines’ best. Local Guides encourages Google Maps users to share reviews of dining destinations, tourist attractions, hotels, shops, and other places they’ve been to.
Later this year, Google will mount a Local Guide Summit that involves local communities and recognizes top contributors.
Google is further celebrating heritage through Google Doodles, which makes the occasional changes on the search homepage, to celebrate birthdays and notable national historic events. A combination of seven Filipino events, festivals, and notable individuals are already lined up to be featured on Google Doodles.
Towards a better, safer internet
Helping Filipinos make the most out of the internet continues to be a priority for Google. Following the launch of app-saving data Datally and storage manager Files Go in 2017, Google announced that YouTube Go is on beta in the Philippines. YouTube Go is an app that lets users manage data when watching videos or saving them for offline viewing.
To create a better internet environment, Google is working with YouTube creators and other social influencers to encourage responsible and productive interactions online. This effort, called #LovePhilippines, takes off from a social media campaign that Google launched in 2016 to highlight unique things about the Philippines, from food, places, culture, and other fun facts. This time, however, Google is making #LovePhilippines bigger to spread love for a safer internet for Filipinos.
“Through the initiatives we outlined this year, Google is committed to giving Filipinos a better experiences on the internet. With new tools and opportunities in store, we are optimistic that we will fuel breakthroughs that will lead to the country’s success,” Ken said.
Watch Ken Lingan's full presentation here: