10 things you may not know about Google

At Google's Cloud Next 2017 conference in San Francisco last week, Google Cloud SVP and VMware co-founder, Diane Greene, provided a snapshot of the Silicon Valley giant's almost two decades of technological innovation. Here are a few things you may not know about one of the global tech industry's most influential organisations.

  • Google operates the world's largest, most secure network. If you took not even Google's largest data centre and stacked all the servers on top of each other, they would be higher than 5,000 feet above Mt Everest. Image credit: Drukair, Butan

  • Just one building inside Google's South Carolina campus is bigger than Stanford's Arrillaga Football Stadium. Image credit:

  • Google has a new complex in The Netherlands that has more than 10,000 miles of cable, enough to stretch from San Francisco to Tokyo and back.

  • Google is the largest purchaser of renewable energy - that's wind farms and solar panels. "One of the things we are very proud of at Google is we have been focused on being carbon-neutral from the beginning," Greene told the audience at Google Cloud Next. "In fact, our purchases are larger than the next three or four purchasers combined."

  • Six days after Niantic Labs, a Google customer, launched Pokemon Go in July last year, the company eclipsed its most optimistic three month predictions. "Their queries increased 50-fold. They were running on Google Cloud and our site reliability engineers were with them 24 hours a day, seven days a week, making this thing go flawlessly," said Google SVP, Diane Greene. At the World Congress earlier this month, Niantic announced that 88 billion Pokemon had been caught. "This was when we realised we needed the same kind of functionality for our customers," Greene said.

  • Google employs more than 700 full-time staff who are watching the network and securing Google Cloud​.

  • Google Chromebooks outsold Apple Macs in the US last year and are used by 20 million school students worldwide.

  • The Google Cloud Platform (GCP) is a billion user application. This means that every day, the customers of GCP connect to over one billion individual users.

  • Over the last 3 years, Google has spent $29.4 billion on capital expenditures alone. Analysts estimate that Google's network traffic is between 25 per cent and 40 per cent of total global internet user traffic.

  • Nine years ago, Google became the first non-telecommunications company to build an undersea cable - the Unity Cable from the United States to Japan. "Last year, we turned up what is today what is the highest capacity submarine cable in the world from the US to Asia. In just a few months, we will turn up an even higher capacity cable from the US to South America," Urs Holzle, SVP, technical infrastructure at Google told attendees at Google Cloud Next.

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