7/29/2020 All Questions Answered by Sundar Pichai about Google at Antitrust Hearing

July 31, 2020


On 7/29/2020, the House Judiciary Committee’s investigation into the market power of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google ran to nearly six hours. Democrats and Republicans asked the CEOs of those companies a combined 217 questions. This video contains only questions relating to Google and answered by CEO Sundar Pichai.

Critics accuse Google of anticompetitive behavior with its ad business because the company owns all sides of the auction system, which could give Google an unfair edge. Pichai responded to questions by arguing that advertisers have many choices, and that Google is only trying to give consumers what they want. When the Republicans began grilling him on why some conservatives have been banned from YouTube, Pichai said there are more conservative voices on YouTube today than there ever have been before.

Check out our other videos for Apple, Facebook and Amazon CEOs answers.

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Written Testimony of Sundar Pichai, Chief Executive Officer, Alphabet Inc.
Before the House Committee on the Judiciary,
Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial, and Administrative Law

Hearing on “Online Platforms and Market Power, Part 6:
Examining the Dominance of Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google”
July 29, 2020

Chairman Cicilline, Ranking Member Sensenbrenner, and distinguished members of
the Subcommittee, thank you for this opportunity to appear before you today.

At its heart, a discussion about competition is a discussion about opportunity. This has
never been more important, as the global pandemic poses dual challenges to our
health and our economy.

Expanding access to opportunity through technology is deeply personal to me. | didn’t
have much access to a computer growing up in India. So you can imagine my
amazement when | arrived in the U.S. for graduate school and saw an entire lab of
computers | could use whenever | wanted.

Accessing the internet for the first time in that computer lab set me ona path to bring
technology to as many people as possible. It’s what inspired me to join Google 16 years
ago. And it’s what led me to help create Google’s first browser, Chrome… not
because | thought the world needed another browser, but because a better browser
could open up the web to more people. | couldn’t have imagined then that, eleven
years later, so many people would experience the web through Chrome, for free.

At Google, we take pride in the number of people who choose our products and
services; we’re even prouder of what they do with them — whether it’s the 140
million students and educators using G Suite for Education to stay connected during
the pandemic… the 5 million Americans gaining digital skills through Grow with
Google, part of our $1 billion initiative to expand economic opportunity … or the
millions of small business owners connecting with customers through Google
products such as Maps and Search.

Our work would not be possible without the long tradition of American innovation, and
we’re proud to contribute to its future. Founded in Silicon Valley, we now employ more
than 120,000 Googlers around the world — more than 75,000 here in the U.S., across
offices and data centers in 26 states. PPI estimated that in 2018 alone we invested
more than $20 billion across the U.S., citing us as the largest capital investor in America
that year. It’s also ranked us in the top five U.S. investors for the last three years.

An important way we contribute is by building products that are helpful to American
users in moments big and small, whether they are looking for a faster route home,
learning how to cook a new dish on YouTube, or growing a small business. Survey
research found that free services like Search, Gmail, Maps, and Photos provide
thousands of dollars a year in value to the average American.

Many are small business owners who have used our digital tools to grow. For example,
Fat Witch Bakery is a New York City-based bakery that for decades has been known
for its delicious brownies. For over 17 years, Fat Witch and its founder Patricia Helding
have been Google Ads customers. The Fat Witch team uses free tools like Google My
Business to interact with their customers and to keep them informed, with over 200
reviews on their profile and counting. They also use free tools like Google Analytics to
track the effectiveness of their marketing spend.

Online has been a lifeline for so many businesses, especially during the global
pandemic. For example, by the time COVID-19 forced Texas to shelter in place,
Kettlebell Kings, an Austin-based fitness company, had already been investing in
Google Ads and Analytics for nearly a decade. When the lockdown orders led to a
surge in sales for home fitness equipment, Kettlebell was prepared to adjust its digital
offerings to capture the market, and its YouTube Channel grew 20%, helping them to
grow their digital revenue and sales, which are up 3000% since COVID hit. Nearly
one-third of small business owners say that without digital tools they would have had
to close all or part of their business during COVID.

lam deeply proud that because of our tools, businesses on Main Street can compete in
a way that wasn’t possible 20 years ago, including globally. For example, Berry Digital
Solutions is a digital marketing firm in Urbana, Ohio, that supports local small
businesses. They use Google tools to work remotely during the pandemic,
coordinating meetings through Google Calendar and collaborating on content in
Google Does. They help their clients use Google Ads, and they appreciate that you
only pay when someone clicks on your ad. The Berry Digital team also uses Google

Analytics to learn more about the customers of their clients and how they can better
serve them.

Another way we contribute is by making deep technology investments in America’s
future. Every year, we are among the world’s biggest investors in research and
development. At the end of 2019, our R&D spend had increased almost 10 times over
10 years, from $2.8 billion to $26 billion. We’ve invested over $90 billion over the last 5

Through these investments, our teams of engineers are helping America solidify its
position as the global leader in emerging technologies like artificial intelligence,
self-driving cars, and quantum computing. For example, last fall, our team of
researchers based here in the U.S. was the first to reach a quantum computing
milestone, a discovery that could eventually lead to new breakthroughs in medicine
and more efficient batteries.

Just as American leadership in these areas is not inevitable, we know Google’s
continued success is not guaranteed. Google operates in highly competitive and
dynamic global markets, in which prices are free or falling, and products are constantly
improving. Today’s competitive landscape looks nothing like it did 5 years ago, let alone
21 years ago, when Google launched its first product, Google Search.

For example, people have more ways to search for information than ever before — and
increasingly this is happening outside the context of only a search engine. Often the
answer is just a click or an app away: You can ask Alexa a question from your kitchen;
read your news on Twitter; ask friends for information via WhatsApp; and get
recommendations on Snapchat or Pinterest. When searching for products online, you
may be visiting Amazon, eBay, Walmart, or any one of a number of e-commerce
providers, where most online shopping queries happen. Similarly, in areas like travel
and real estate, Google faces strong competition for search queries from many
businesses that are experts in these areas.

A competitive digital ad marketplace gives publishers and advertisers, and therefore
consumers, an enormous amount of choice. For example, competition in ads — from
Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Comcast and others — has helped lower online
advertising costs by 40% over the last 10 years, with these savings passed down to
consumers through lower prices.

We also deliberately build platforms that support the innovation of others. Using
Android — a product | worked on for many years — thousands of device makers and
mobile operators build and sell devices without any licensing fees to us or any
requirement to integrate our products. This greatly reduces device prices, and today
billions of consumers around the globe are now able to afford cutting-edge
smartphones, some for less than $50. And in doing so they are able to access new
opportunities — whether it’s sharing a video with friends and family around the world,
gaining an education for themselves or their children, or starting a business.

Competition also sets higher standards for privacy and security. I’ve always believed
that privacy is a universal right and should be available to everyone, and Google is
committed to keeping your information safe, treating it responsibly, and putting you in
control of what you choose to share. We also never sell user information to third
parties. But more must be done to protect users across industries, which is why we’ve
long supported the creation of comprehensive federal privacy laws.

To this day, | haven’t forgotten how access to innovation and technology altered
the course of my life. Google aims to build products that increase access to
opportunity for everyone — no matter where you live, what you believe, or how
much money you earn. We are committed to partnering with lawmakers, including the
members of this Committee, to protect consumers, maintain America’s competitive
technological edge in the world, and ensure that every American has access to the
incredible opportunities that technology creates.

Thank you.

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