What happened: Google is said to be in talks with companies including Tencent to offer its cloud-based products in China. Negotiations reportedly began in January 2018. However, there is some uncertainty as to whether the plans will go ahead amid trade tensions between the US and China. While not explicitly mentioning China, Google Cloud chief Diane Greene said last week that she wants the business to be a “global cloud,” while the company is seeking employees in its Shanghai office.
Why it’s important: News broke last week that Google plans to launch a filtered version of its search engine, re-entering the Chinese market for the first time in nearly a decade. Now it seems the company hopes to offer a full range of products in the country. Google, which usually uses its own data centers to run services such as Drive and Docs, will need to find a local partner as regulations require all data be held locally. However, siding with Tencent on a cloud deal could put the company up against Alibaba, which operates a major cloud service in China.