Executives of Google as well as officials of real estate firm Ilitch Holdings have announced that the online search giant has leased new office space in downtown Detroit. The new office in a planned residential, office and retail development measures 2,700 square meters or 29,000 square feet. The online search giant’s new offices will be located along Little Caesars Area which is home to National Hockey League’s Red Wings and National Basketball Association’s Pistons.
“Our new space will not only provide room for future growth, but will also give us the opportunity to contribute to the dynamic economic and community activity happening in Detroit,” said Google’s executives in a statement.
Last month the Mountain View, California-based tech giant had confirmed that it would be moving to downtown Detroit from the suburbs. Currently Google’s office space in the Birmingham suburbs measures 17,000 square feet. The number of employees is 100 and they mostly concentrate on offering technical support and media sales.
Google’s AdWords unit, the main source of revenue and advertising vehicle for the tech giant, employs over 400 people in Ann Arbor. In the state of Michigan Google has about 600 employees.
The online search giant’s move to downtown Detroit comes in the wake of research firm Strategy Analytics putting out a report which indicates that Google’s virtual assistant, Google Assistant will dominate smartphones by the year 2022 edging out competitors such as Samsung’s Bixby and Apple’s Siri. At the moment Google Assistant is the most installed virtual assistant on smartphones with 46% of all smartphones running it. By 2022 it is projected that the virtual assistant will increase its market share to more than 60%.
The report further suggests that the smartphone virtual assistant market will be dominated by online search giants. At the moment Chinese-based online search giant, Baidu, occupies of the market in AI-powered devices. By 2022 this market share is expected to increase to 23%.
The rise of Google Assistant is also expected to hinder the growth of Bixby. At the moment Bixby’s market share is 13% but with Google having control over Android, this is expected to fall to 5% since smartphone owners running the search giant’s mobile operating system will favor Google Assistant over the virtual assistant from the South Korean conglomerate.
Though there are currently about two billion mobile devices running Android, less than half are able to run Google Assistant as the virtual assistant is only compatible with Android 6.0 Marshmallow and above.