Google plans to spend $ 7 billion on data centers and offices in the US this year, down from $ 3 billion from 2020 when CEO Sundar Pichai pledged to spend $ 10 billion.

Pichai said in a blog post today that the $ 7 billion investment will help accelerate the economic recovery from the pandemic, noting that the future of Google’s work is in the office and does not mean relocating its headquarters outside Silicon Valley. This is in stark contrast to other technology giants, including Hewlett Packard Enterprise announcing plans to move its headquarters out of California during the pandemic and companies like Dell Technologies saying the future of work is hybrid at best.

“Getting together in person to collaborate and build community is central to Google’s culture and will be an important part of our future,” Pichai wrote, adding that Google will invest more than $ 1 billion in its home state of California. . It will also add “thousands of roles” at its offices in Atlanta, Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C. Its total investment of $ 7 billion will create at least 10,000 new full-time jobs in the United States, Pichai said.

The new work will target “diverse communities” and promote Google’s racial justice commitments, Pichai said. “We’re already making progress: 2020 was our most significant year in hiring Black and Latino Googlers in the US, both overall and in technology positions.”

In addition to investing in new offices, Google will expand its data centers in Nebraska, South Carolina, Virginia, Nevada and Texas. Pichai said Google’s existing data center sites in Nebraska, Ohio, Texas and Nevada “will be fully operational by 2021.”

Google’s Cloud Aspirations Stall

Google’s $ 7 billion pledge comes as the third largest cloud giant is struggling to gain market share from number one, Amazon, which owns about 32%, and second, Microsoft, with 20%. In comparison, Google’s market share remained stable at around 9% in the fourth quarter of 2020, despite significant investments in its cloud business.

Google’s cloud operations last year reported an operating loss of $ 5.61 billion on $ 13.06 billion in revenue for 2020.