comscore Chinese media blames Google over Gmail suspension
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Chinese media blames Google over Gmail suspension

  • Updated: December 30, 2014 2:37 PM IST
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US Internet giant Google’s failure to obey Chinese law is to be blamed for the suspension of its popular email service, a state-run daily today said after the last indirect means to access Gmail was apparently blocked. Also Read - Google's offline dinosaur game in new Olympics avatar: Here's how to can play

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“China welcomes the firm to do business on the prerequisite that it obeys Chinese law. However, Google values more its reluctance to be restricted by Chinese law, resulting in conflict,” an editorial in the Global Times said. “The issue at heart is to what extent Google is willing to obey Chinese law, on which China’s attitude is steadfast,” the article titled ‘Gmail glitch fuels unnecessary speculation’ said. The world’s biggest email service, Gmail has been largely inaccessible from within China since the run-up to the 25th anniversary in June of the Tiananmen Square crackdown on pro- democracy protests. Also Read - Timex Helix Smart 2.0 with temperature sensor, heart rate sensor launched: Details here

Its services accessed though VPN (Virtual Private Network) via Internet servers abroad to skip China’s massive surveillance firewalls were also barred by the government in recent days. Google has maintained a delicate relationship with China since it withdrew from the Chinese mainland in 2010. The editorial also hinted that the ban may have been enforced suspended due to security considerations and asked users to reconcile to the fact. “If the China side indeed blocked Gmail, the decision must have been prompted by newly emerged security reasons. If that is the case, Gmail users need to accept the reality of Gmail being suspended in China,” it said. However, sounding conciliatory, it said: “But we hope it is not the case. We only need to have faith that China has its own logic in terms of Internet policy and it is made and run in accordance with the country’s fundamental interests.”

“We don’t want to be shut off, as it obviously doesn’t serve our own interests”. Chinese foreign ministry yesterday said it was not aware of the nation’s inability to access Gmail services. “China always welcomes and supports foreign investors’ legal business operations in China and will continue to provide an open, transparent and fair environment for foreign enterprises,” spokesperson Hua Chunying said. Google’s own Transparency Report, which shows real-time traffic to Google services, displayed a sharp drop-off in traffic from China on Friday. Traffic has remained low since then.

Earlier this month, country’s top Internet regulator Lu Wei visited Google’s US headquarters and showed openness by welcoming the firm and other Internet giants to China. Google has constantly run into trouble with authorities globally with issues similar to those it has faced in China, the editorial said. The article also took potshots at the Western media for over-simplification. “The problems with Gmail access this time may be caused by the China side, by Google itself or a combination of the two.””… Western media pointed the finger at Chinese authorities immediately, accusing them of strengthening its cyber censorship. This is far too simple a hypothesis.”

Advising China can not let its guard down while opening up, it added: “As is widely known, China has to keep strengthening its national security while it opens up to the West”. “We cannot avoid issues like Internet and ideological security when dealing with large IT companies from the West.” Unveiled for the first time globally in India, Google is planning to roll out the programme to bring an affordable smartphone to the masses across markets like Indonesia, Philippines, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka in the coming months. “With several new innovations happening on the technical front, we will see a host of new devices with evolutionary technical developments such as increased memory, faster processors, higher resolution cameras etc. This will span across various price brands thus enhancing the range of smartphones available to Indian customers,” Bindal said.

The key differentiation factor in the future for mobile handset brands will include the technology development, service support and brand reliability, he added. A Samsung spokesperson said it expects its sales to continue to grow robustly in 2015. Market analysts are also betting big on wearables as a category to grow fast in the coming year. While 2014 saw many handset makers like Apple, Motorola, Samsung and LG announcing new smartwatches, sports companies like Adidas also jumped on the bandwagon with their fitness bands. “With the advent of the Internet of Things, the potential of connecting with regular items such as TV, refrigerators or washing machines which can become smart enough to talk to. The future also depends a lot on the device, as not all wearables are the same and the market trend is reflecting that health and enterprise are the two sectors seeing the most attention,” Motorola India General Manager Amit Boni said.

Industry watchers are of the view that there is still an immense potential in the Indian market that players will explore in the coming year. “The smartphone market in India is still not mature. India has only 111 million smartphone users and the projected user base is 519 million by FY18. Hence, there is high potential in the market,” said Joshi of Deloitte Haskins & Sells. Many brands are lined up with new features and services to attract customers like OnePlusOne, Lenovo Layered phone will give tough fight to established brands, he added.

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  • Published Date: December 30, 2014 2:28 PM IST
  • Updated Date: December 30, 2014 2:37 PM IST



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