iTWire - Google Celebrates 20 Years in Australia: Milestones, Research, Quantum Computing and More

iTWire – Google Celebrates 20 Years in Australia: Milestones, Research, Quantum Computing and More

Mel Silva, Managing Director of Google Australia, published a lengthy blog post celebrating the company’s journey, starting with one employee in 2002, to over 2,000 local Googlers in 2022, providing nearly 67 billion dollars of annual economic value to Australia, plus a range of other notable achievements and plenty of interesting research – read on!

Google celebrates 20 years of business in Australia in a blog post written by its Australian CEO, Mel Silva, which we have reproduced in full below:

It’s been 20 years since Google first landed in Australia, and while our mission has remained the same, our place and our work in Australia has evolved over time. The Australian team started in a salon in 2002, with just one employee. We now have over 2,000 local Googlers, about half of whom support our engineering work, and through our apps and services, we now deliver nearly $67 billion in annual economic value to Australia.

Whether it’s capturing the wonders of Uluṟu-Kata Tjuṯa National Park via Google Maps Street View and exploring the stories of Australian sport with Great Sporting Land, helping small businesses grow with Google and To support innovators and nonprofits nationwide with, we’ve partnered with communities to create solutions and share important information and ideas with the world. We’ve built products that have adapted to the world, including Google Maps, which was born right here in Sydney. And we’ve partnered with over 1.6 million Australian businesses, large and small, to help them thrive online and reach the world.

Partnerships have been central to our work in Australia and are at the heart of the Digital Future Initiative – Google’s five-year, $1 billion commitment to create jobs and drive innovation in Australia, including through s partnering with CSIRO to protect our reef and investing in Quantum IT.

Throughout our journey over the past 20 years, Google search has been a constant. Australians have turned to research to learn and unleash their curiosity. Here, then, are five themes that have defined the past two decades of research in Australia:

We are hungry to learn everything

Australians are renowned for our do-it-yourself (do-it-yourself) spirit, and this research has reached an all-time high during the pandemic (May 2020). We’re clearly crafty, looking for DIY blinds, face masks, wedding invitations and Christmas decorations. And we set out to learn – how to draw, tie a tie, play the guitar, and how to build a cubby house, pizza oven, kennel, and more. We were also adventurous in the kitchen, with ingredients that had been trending over the past five years, including tomahawk steak, scallops, brisket, sago pearls, lobster tail, tempeh and bone marrow.

We’ve been following the pandemic, the politics… and we’re crazy about sports

Our main news searches covered sectors and borders. A defining moment in our history, “Covid” topped the list, followed by “Trump.” Our obsession with the sport came through, with ‘AFL’ and ‘NRL’ coming in third and fourth, while news about ‘Arsenal’ and ‘F1’ also landed in the top 10. Looking further, we also looked for information on Ukraine and China.

The natural world is our concern

In January 2020, searches for “bushfires” and “air quality” reached all-time highs, and overall “bushfires” and “floods” dominated searches for natural disasters over the past two decades. This year’s rainfall on the east coast resulted in the second spike in flood interest in Google’s history, following the 2011 floods in Queensland. And as we grapple with La Niña, more people have searched for “when will the rain stop” in March 2022 than ever before. Our concern about climate change has also peaked, with climate anxiety being searched 5.5 times more over the past five years.

Charity and sustainability are on our minds

Australia is the first country to seek out charity shops, and we’re curious if op shops sell everything from pots, books, door beads, perfumes…even underwear. We also researched sustainable transport, recycling and electric cars more than ever.

We dare to take care

A keen interest in self-care has been captured in our research – from its definition and importance to researching self-care plans, activities and boxes. We also looked at personal care for nurses, social workers, men, mothers and teachers. In line with the pandemic, new modes of healthcare were also on the agenda, with interest in “telehealth” peaking in March 2020.

We had fun along the way, including researching things like “time travel” and “space travel.” We also enjoyed the surprises on the search, recognizing Australian icons and moments with Doodles, including the Sydney Opera House, Arthur Boyd, NAIDOC Week and Cecilia May Gibbs. We paid homage to Fairy Bread and kept an eye out for the ever-mysterious Drop Bear.

Caption: A snapshot of Google Doodles in Australia over the years including; The Opera House (2003), Arthur Boyd (2010), Cecilia May Gibbs (2013), The Great Barrier Reef (2017), Steve Irwin (2019), Australian Firefighters (2020) and Pearl Gibbs “Gambanyi” (2021)

It has certainly been an incredible 20 years for Google in Australia. A big thank you to all of our amazing Australian researchers, partners, customers and Googlers! Here are the next 20!

To dive deeper into the past two decades, check out the lists below:

Top “how to” searches in Australia

  1. To draw
  2. Screenshot
  3. Losing weight
  4. Tie a tie
  5. Make money
  6. having sex
  7. make chocolate
  8. Playing guitar
  9. make slime
  10. delete facebook

Top DIY searches in Australia

  1. blinds
  2. Mask
  3. wedding invitations
  4. Christmas decorations
  5. Kitchens
  6. Christmas presents
  7. bedroom decorations
  8. Halloween Costumes
  9. Floor tile
  10. bedroom decor

Most searched terms alongside “news” in Australia

  1. Covid news
  2. Trump News
  3. AFL News
  4. NRL news
  5. Police News
  6. Qld News
  7. Ukrainian News
  8. Arsenal news
  9. F1 News
  10. China News

Most Wanted Natural Disasters:

  1. Bushfire
  2. Flood
  3. Cyclone
  4. Earthquake
  5. Storm

Most searched items with “do op shops/charity shops sell…” in Australia

  1. pans
  2. Books
  3. Underwear
  4. door beads
  5. Scent
  6. bicycles
  7. Cloths
  8. SIM cards
  9. Gift cards
  10. Cameras

Frequently asked questions about personal care in Australia

  1. What is Self-Care?
  2. Why is self-care important?
  3. How to take care of yourself?
  4. What to put in a self care box?
  5. What is self-care ability?
  6. Is self-care selfish?
  7. What is a Personal Care Plan?
  8. What are self-care strategies?
  9. What are personal care activities?
  10. What is personal care in nursing?

Australia’s most searched ‘personal care for…’

  1. Nurses
  2. Social workers
  3. Men
  4. Chrysanthemums
  5. Teachers
  6. Kids
  7. new moms
  8. Advisors
  9. Women
  10. caregivers

Top searches for “how to build (a)…” in Australia

  1. Retaining wall
  2. Accommodation
  3. Pergola
  4. Maisonette
  5. Fencing
  6. Pizza oven
  7. Shed
  8. dog kennel
  9. Stairs
  10. Gate

Top trending ingredients alongside “how to cook” (last five years vs. previous five years)

  1. Tomahawk steak
  2. Scallops in shell
  3. Brisket
  4. sago pearls
  5. lobster tail
  6. Tempeh
  7. Cauliflower rice
  8. Bone marrow
  9. Broccoli
  10. Enoki Mushrooms

Most searched types of travel in Australia

  1. Time travel
  2. Trip abroad
  3. student trip
  4. last minute trip
  5. smart travel
  6. Space travel
  7. Load up and go on a trip
  8. Flight
  9. travel the world
  10. cheap travel

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