Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai has said he would like to find other ways the company can collaborate with Apple in the future, following a successful rollout of Exposure Notifications on iOS and Android to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus around the world.
Speaking in an interview with Wired, the CEO said he was “committed to finding other opportunities” to work with Apple, saying that he “had the same sense” as Apple’s Tim Cook.
“Large companies working together in service of society is good for the world,” he added.
Apple and Google’s partnership for the COVID-19 tracker and notification system was, when announced, unprecedented.
Though the two companies operate in different fields and have fingers in their own pies, the collaboration shocked the world when the two companies put public health above profitability. It’s thought Apple was working on its own tracking system and then asked Google if it wanted to be involved, and Pichai was quick to accept the invite.
“Both teams independently had started working on technology to support health agencies in their contact tracing work,” Pichai told Wired.
“Very quickly both sides realized that for this to work well it has to be available everywhere.”
Following that, engineering teams from both companies began reaching out, and Pichai and Cook came together to give their seal of approval. Then the API was officially announced.
Pichai confirmed that he meets Cook “periodically,” and added that the new Exposure Notifications system would still be impactful even if just 20% of the general public participate.
“We also realized we have to give users real privacy guarantees,” he said. “I think we struck the right balance.”
The CEO also confirmed that he thinks it would be unlikely for the company to go totally remote in the future, adding that he prefers a physical working environment for his staff.
Do you think Google and Apple could come together in the future for more projects? Let us know your thoughts and check back for more news and rumors as soon as we get them.