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Company to grow in Cambridge

By D.C. Denison
Globe Staff / November 5, 2009

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Steve Vinter, engineering director of Google Boston, said yesterday that Google’s Cambridge operation will be “growing very rapidly in the next few months.’’

Vinter made his comments while introducing Google’s chief executive, Eric Schmidt, who visited the company’s Kendall Square office to speak to about two dozen journalists.

Google’s Boston-based projects include the social networking service Friend Connect, Book Search, and a number of internal projects that “don’t get a lot of attention because users don’t see them,’’ Vinter said.

The company, based in Mountain View, Calif., also has an advertising sales team working out of Cambridge. Asked what projects will be expanded here or how many jobs might be added, Vinter said Google would make hires in advertising sales and engineering, but he did not give any numbers. The company now has about 200 employees in Cambridge.

“It’s virtually the case that every project we have is scaling up,’’ he said.

In a wide-ranging discussion that followed, Schmidt said he believes the economy is recovering. He also talked about the company’s Android mobile phone operating system, and its communications and collaboration program, Google Wave, which is currently in limited preview but “getting ready for a much broader distribution.’’

Schmidt said he is optimistic about prospects for growth in information technology and other advanced fields in Massachusetts.

He said the United States should focus economic leadership in four areas: information technology, biotechnology, clean technology, and advanced manufacturing, such as nanotech, electronics, and batteries.

D.C. Denison can be reached at denison@globe.com.