Google's Problems in China

Case Details Case Introduction 1 Case Introduction 2 Case Excerpts

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Google in China

In September 2000, Google began operating a search engine in Chinese by offering 24 million web pages in Chinese language (Refer Exhibit IV for Internet and Internet search market in China). By 2002, Google had gained lot of popularity in China owing to its simplicity and ability to carry out searches effectively.

During that time, the Chinese government was blocking several websites through IP filters intermittently. The blocking increased during times of heightened security like the anniversary of Tiananmen Square events, the national party congress, etc. But users of Google could circumvent the government censorship through cached pages...

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Google Loses Market Share

By early 2004, users in China had thought that Google was unreliable and started using alternative search engines. Elliot Schrage, Vice-president, Global Communications and Public Affairs of Google said that Google was seven times slower than its rival Baidu and Google itself was not happy with the way its services were being operated in the country..........

The Launch of

Google wanted to have a major presence in China. The market was lucrative because of its size. China had the second largest number of Internet users after the US. Google felt that only a local presence could help it to provide better and more reliable services to customers. To operate in China, Google needed an Internet Content Provider license, which required it to filter its content........

The Road Ahead

Analysts opined that with Internet users would have a better experience after the launch of, and Google may once again emerge as the most preferred search engine in the country. According to findings reported by Keynote Systems in January 2006, Google was in a strong position to challenge Baidu in the Chinese search engine market. The study concluded that Chinese users, once they started using Google, preferred it to any other search engine........


Exhibit I: Internet in China - Key Regulations
Exhibit II: Forbidden Searches in China
Exhibit III: Google - New Services
Exhibit IV: An Overview of the Internet Market in China Exhibit V: ISPs Filtering Methods
Exhibit V: Websites Not Showed by