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Google offers Free Website with .in domains in India (nainomics.blogspot.com)
111 points by akarambir 2059 days ago | hide | past | web | 39 comments | favorite

A great tool for domain harvesters. I expect all meaningful .in domains to exhaust in a few months giving way to black market.

It requires a PAN number, which seems to be a unique identifier for the entity that is registering the domain [1]

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Permanent_account_number

Yeah, they are asking for unique PAN(Permanent Account Number) issued by Income Tax department, Government of India. However, I don't know if PAN issued to individuals will work here. The fourth letter of PAN identifies the type of entity PAN is issued for. For example, my PAN is APUPK3*M.

C — Company

P — Person

H — HUF(Hindu Undivided Family)

F — Firm

A — Association of Persons (AOP)

T — AOP (Trust)

B — Body of Individuals (BOI)

L — Local Authority

J — Artificial Juridical Person

G — Government

I guess they will check PAN to identify if it is "a business entity operating from India".

They can't verify the validity and authenticity of a PAN. Only a government/legal agency will be able to do it. So for this purpose I can just enter any arbitrary number that appears like a valid PAN and get through.

Can PAN card be verified using API? If so then who all can get access to that?

Its impossible to verify otherwise.


Yes. It can be. Since the NSDL service is available to banks.

And since this program works in conjunction with ICICI. it's very possible

Partners include FISME(Federation of Indian Micro and Small & Medium Enterprises), a not-for-profit that has a lot of pull within the government and a really popular bank - ICICI (that has access to PAN numbers anyway); so an internal service to verify PAN numbers would be quite possible.

PS - PAN numbers are like SSNs over here.

Are they like SSNs in that they are dangerous information to give out? The grandparent post just wrote his in the comment and doesn't seem to concerned.

given the volumes, would not be too hard to do a manual verification with a 2-3 day turnaround

Seems like a lot of work to save $15 reg fee.

BlogSpot is banned at work, but is this similar to the 'Getting British Business Online' (http://www.gbbo.co.uk/) thing in the UK?

Hmmm, I suppose not, as GBBO seems to be a partnership offer. Still, I think more people should be aware of it :)

GBBO is very poorly executed though.

Google Sites was never intended to be used for external sites, and the sites are both difficult to navigate for the user and difficult to maintain for the company.

The only redeeming factor of GBBO was the free .co.uk domain name, but that only saved local businesses around £10.

Yeah I agree the execution could've been much much better.

I do think it might've reduced the barrier for getting Mum & Dad's local shop their own website though. As you say, its difficulty to maintain didn't help!

The upside is that after 30 days you can transfer your domain name away and use it on your own site hosting, which is exactly what I did.

By execution, do you mean in terms of what the customer gets out of it?

This is a global initiative, gybo.us, gybo.ca, etc. Not much new here, although it is a great program.

These are all built by my company - http://p.ota.to/work/getting-business-online/

Looks interesting. I'd like to work there ;)

very cool - great work!

Yes its same.

I wish they had partnered with a better hosting company.

Great boost for small business in India who wants to make their presence more visible outside their towns/cities.

It's sad that Google would associate themselves with an overage hosting company as pathetic as Hostgator.

Could you expand on that? I'm contemplating using Hostgator, mainly because it has received fairly positive comments in HN (as a hosting company). The "unlimited" promises seem too good to be true, though.

In any event, how can they be "overage" if they provide unlimited hosting? Do you mean "overselling"?

I've been with Host Gator for years without issue. Support is good etc. However you will get suspended for excessive usage on those shared 'unlimited' plans. They might have the exact limits in the fine print, or you could ask a live chat assistant.

>However you will get suspended for excessive usage on those shared 'unlimited' plans. //

So fraudulent advertising then.

What hosting company would you recommend then?

They recently launched the same thing for Sweden: http://www.dittforetagonline.se/

The same for Spain. Are we the new India? http://www.conectatunegocio.es/

Hostgator has an affiliate program offering $100 per sales. Will that be used to cover the initial costs? Just thinking.

just think on all those web development houses that are about to struggle... It reminds me of one comment that talked about how google gave things for free, killing innovation on those areas, and they killing the product...


I can see this making it harder for web developers who want to charge too much to hack together a crappy site for someone's restaurant, but that's not killing innovation: that's progress.

Perhaps sebastianavina is trying to take a longer term view. That if local web designers are all priced out the market by Google, as they can't work for free and live, then there will be no local web designers in India. No local web designers is going to mean that any distinct local style, artistic innovation, is going to be quashed.

I know what you mean but can't help but feel if I was a small scale designer working with local businesses then this could probably put me out of business.

I wonder if some less scrupulous designers will attempt to front-end these sites; charge for design and then use the Google system to make the site, etc..

This has been available in the UK for a long time, I got a few .co.uk's the problem is you do need to use their google tools, changing the DNS information required me emailing the service and they did it manually which is why it's designed for small business.

Google offer a free website design/creation/domain and hosting service in the UK? Link please.

Anybody else a bit sad that it's all in English rather than Hindi and Bengali? I can't read either, but having an option to read/create it in your native language would certainly speed up acceptance...

From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Official_languages_of_India

"The official language of the Indian Union is Hindi with English as an additional language for official work; [...]"

for small and medium enterprises, this is a great opportunity. But i don't know if this would really increase web presence among small businesses as they are inclined to traditional methods. I'm from India, and I've tried personally with some small shop owners. But they don't understand the need to go web, especially in Tier II and III cities.

Well its changing.

I know a steel trader (40+yrs old) with 2 person staff setup a website 1yr back. These days he is getting queries from pan India & also from big companies. He spend some money on SEO at the beginning. In the past he tried all types of classified but never happened that a company like Godrej reach out for quote.

This is just one example.

This is great stuff. One major hickup solved for SMB's . Good service going in hand with great support .

Why doesn't Google promote innovation in United States? US is going through a pretty big crisis.

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