My personal first experience with Google was in 1999, it was not a hot thing, infact the only hot thing back then was to have a Hotmail. I used to endure drive time to town only to visit an internet Cafe in Kwekwe Town, ( im not sure if the cafe is still even operational at Old mutual building.) My only worry was to check my yahoo mail which took many minutes and honestly we never really complained.
Anyway that was then, i was in form 3, and when i first came across Google, it was already a year or two old but it had made less noise and i found it cool.
Like everyone else , yahoo search engine was the Google of that time and noone else really cared much about search engines, i personally stumbled upon Google, and Yes it was really cool. Not much has really changed on the actual front end interface.
Today Google in Zimbabwe has become a noun and adjective.
Its very common to hear someone saying just Google It! Yet also the name still is the noun for the biggest search engine ever. Even Prophet E Makandiwa after preaching on some wisdom nuggets, he says “endai muno googler hamuzviwane”, simply translated even this wisdom can not be found on Google.
Google in Zimbabwe has become the source of Information for millions online, some say this has killed the reading and reasearch culture as everything is now simply available at a few clicks away, ironic hey. Google has also brought in authentic and unverified information closer to the masses as they crawl billions of websites .
It surely has made an impact to our socio-econic and tech life as we embrace the information age!
Technically on Sept. 4, 1998, Sergey Brin and Larry Page incorporated the company that would go on to become the world’s largest search engine and offer products that touch nearly every part of our lives.
here is more on Google achievements from Mashable
A little-known startup called Google first launched to change the world 15 years ago today — give or take a few days.
The exact date of Google’s launch is a little unclear, as the company has celebrated its birthday on several different dates over the years. Technically, the company registered the Google.com domain on Sept. 15, 1997 — more than 16 years ago — and filed to be incorporated on Sept. 4, 1998. Whatever the case, Google says it is officially celebrating its 15th birthday on Friday.
See also: In the Garage Where Google Was Born
In honor of Google’s special day, we’ve pulled together 15 stats showing just how much the company and its products have grown in its first 15 years.
Google indexed 26 million web pages when it launched in 1998. Now, it indexes 60 trillion web pages.
Google answered 10,000 search queries a day when it was in beta in 1998. Today, Google handles more than 100 billion searches every month.
The company hired its first employee in September 1998 and had 1,907 employees as of March 31, 2004, a few months before going public. By the end of last quarter, Google had 44,777 employees.
Google’s first Doodle was published in 1998 to show that founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin were out of the office attending the Burning Man music festival. There have since been more than 1,000 Google Doodles.
Google made its first public acquisition in 2001 when it bought Deja.com’s Usenet Discussion Service. It has now made more than 100 acquisitions to date.
When Google went public on Aug. 19, 2004, its stock opened at $85 a share. Google stock opened at $874 on Friday morning, a more than 10-fold increase.
Google had a market cap of $23 billion on the day it went public. Its current market cap is just more than $290 billion.
The company reported revenue of $961.9 million in 2003, the year before it went public. In 2012, Google reported its first $50 billion revenue year.
Page and Brin opened a Google bank account in September 1998 that consisted of a $100,000 check from the co-founder of Sun Microsystems. They are now personally worth about $23 billion each.
Google acquired Android in 2005. There have now been more than one billion Android device activations and 50 billion mobile apps downloaded.
Google kicked off its Street View efforts in 2007 to map the world. Since then, Google has driven more than 6 million miles across 3,000 cities in 52 countries.
Google introduced its social network Google+ a little over two years ago. As of the end of last year, it had passed 500 million members, 135 million of which were reportedly active users.
Chrome, Google’s browser, launched in 2008. Four years later, it passed Internet Explorer to become the most popular web browser and currently has more than 750 million users.
Google had 38% of mobile ad revenue worldwide in 2011, according to eMarketer. This year, the company is expected to take home 53% of global mobile ad revenue, or about $8.8 billion.
YouTube had around 20 million unique monthly visitors in 2006 when it was acquired by Google, according to multiple estimates at the time. The video service now reports having more than one billion unique visitors each month who collectively stream 6 billion hours of video.