Google: Should "Dragonfly" Fly?
In 2018, China was the biggest market for Internet services in the world. Along with the country's huge market size, its comparatively low penetration made it an immensely attractive market for search engine services. To capture this market, Google was planning to re-enter the Chinese market-after leaving in 2010-with a censored search engine codenamed "Dragonfly." The move was opposed by human rights activists, Google's own employees, and the U.S. government. Google had the opportunity to improve its share in the global search-engine segment if it could somehow tap into the vast Chinese market. But the tight control over Internet services by the Chinese government on one hand, and the protests by various interest groups on the other, had put Google in a tight spot. Google had to decide if it should go ahead with the plan to offer Dragonfly in China. Should Google instead explore other market and non-market strategies to re-enter the Chinese market? Veena Keshav Pailwar is affiliated with Institute of Management Technology, Nagpur.