What is Google?

Google is a multinational technology company that specializes in Internet-related services and products. Its best known product is a search engine, but the firm also offers a range of other software tools and physical devices designed to work in tandem with its online offerings. Google is headquartered in Mountain View, California, and operates data centers across the globe. In 2015, it split its many business interests into a holding company called Alphabet Inc., with Google operating as its lead subsidiary.

Google first launched in 1998 as a search engine, and it has since grown to be the most popular web tool on the planet. Its dominance has given rise to concerns that the company has a chokehold on how information is accessed and used. Its name derives from a googol, a number representing a very large number of digits, which was chosen to reflect its founders’ aim to organize the world’s information and make it accessible.

The company has expanded to include more than 50 products and services, from e-mail and online document creation to mobile phones and television sets. Its broad portfolio has made it one of the top four influential high-tech firms, alongside Apple, Microsoft, and IBM.

Although the company offers many Internet-related services, its search engine continues to generate most of its revenue. Google’s algorithm ranks sites based on the number of inbound and outbound links, on-page content, and other factors. This process is often referred to as “crawling,” and it allows Google to deliver highly relevant results.

While the company’s search engine remains its most lucrative offering, it has also developed an impressive line of hardware products. This includes the Pixel smartphone line, the Chromecast in-home streaming device, and the Chromebook laptop range. In addition, it has created a series of physical devices that work in conjunction with its online services, such as the Google Glass augmented reality headset and the Nest smart home hub.

Other notable Google services include Google Books, a digital repository of thousands of books; G Suite (formerly Google Apps for Your Domain), a cloud-based office productivity suite; and Android, an operating system for smartphones and tablets. Google also maintains a number of online forums and social media networks, as well as a photo-sharing service called Google Photos.

In addition, the company has a wide array of software and apps for smartphones and computers, including the Google Maps navigation app and Google Sheets and Google Docs collaboration tools. It has also recently introduced the Nest Cam IQ, a security camera that uses artificial intelligence to recognize people and pets and can communicate with other smart home devices. In the future, it may introduce a virtual assistant named Google Assistant, which will compete with Amazon’s Alexa and other voice-activated digital helpers. In addition, it has plans to release an open source operating system called Fuchsia. This will compete with existing systems, such as iOS and Android. It will be released on a rolling basis, and developers will be encouraged to create third-party applications.

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