Google is reportedly “scaling back” support for a number of projects that have failed to generate profit, including the Boston Dynamics robotics company, internet service provider Google Fiber, and solar-powered drone developer Titan Aerospace, which was recently closed down completely according to CBS News.
“According to media reports, the Mountain View, Calif.-based tech giant recently pulled the plug on Titan Aerospace, a maker of solar-powered drones, which it acquired in 2014. Management told the business’ employees to look for other jobs in the company,” reported CBS News. “Google Fiber, the company’s Internet service provider, reportedly cut 9 percent of its staff, and is pausing or ending operations in 10 cities where it hasn’t fully deployed its service. The venture’s chief executive officer, Craig Barratt, left in October and hasn’t been replaced.”
“Google reportedly has tried to sell its Boston Dynamics robotics business that it acquired in 2013,” they continued. “Alphabet’s Nest Ventures, which makes Internet-connected thermostats, restructured its operations last year. Nest co-founder and CEO Tony Fadell stepped down last June. Google acquired the company for $3.2 billion in 2014.”
The so-called “moonshot ventures” are categorized as losing money and having “little to do with [Google’s] core search advertising business.”
Boston Dynamics became a viral sensation online after videos of their range of advanced robots ranging from those that look like animals to those that look like humans, along with videos showing developers hitting and tripping up the robots to demonstrate their ability to stabilize themselves.
“I don’t think that anyone believes that these investments are significantly restraining the company’s margins or profitability,” said CFRA Analyst Scott Kessler. “People see benefits to them spending less and focusing less on these moonshot projects.”