Waymo, better known as Google X’s self-driving project, is in talks to partner with Honda on developing fully self-driving cars, the companies announced on Wednesday. If discussions progress, Honda will be the second automaker Waymo will have partnered with.
In May, Waymo — which spun out into its own Alphabet subsidiary last week — struck up a deal with Fiat Chrysler to produce 100 self-driving minivans. Previously, the self-driving project has had difficulty partnering with automakers as many of the car makers wanted to avoid relinquishing their brand to Google. It’s not clear exactly how many vehicles Honda will commit to this partnership.Read more
Google is setting up its self-driving car unit as its own separate entity called Waymo under the Alphabet umbrella. The name is derived from its mission of finding “a new way forward in mobility.”
“We’re now an independent company within the Alphabet umbrella,” Waymo CEO John Krafcik told. He also noted that the Waymo team conducted the first fully driverless ride on public roads in Austin last year, using a car with no steering wheels and no pedals in “everyday traffic” on city streets. This historic first, fully driverless ride on public roads put Steve Mahan, a legally blind friend of Waymo principal engineer Nathaniel Fairfield, in the self-driving car solo.Read more
Nest is coming under fire following an announcement that Revolv, a smart home startup it acquired two years ago, would be permanently shutting off its product starting May 15th.
The decision, announced in a quiet note on Revolv's website in February, has gone largely unnoticed and is expected to impact a very small number of consumers. However, it does raise serious questions about the longevity of smart home gadgets. The devices are often costly pieces of hardware made by small startups that may drop support at any point after being scooped up by a larger technology company.Read more
Eric Schmidt will head a new Pentagon advisory board aimed at bringing Silicon Valley innovation and best practices to the U.S. military, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said.
Carter unveiled the new Defense Innovation Advisory Board with Schmidt during the annual RSA cyber security conference in San Francisco, saying it would give the Pentagon access to "the brightest technical minds focused on innovation." Schmidt, now the executive chairman of Alphabet Inc, the parent company of Google, said the board would help bridge what he called a clear gap between how the U.S. military and the technology industry operate.Read more
Alphabet, Google’s new holding company and moonshot incubator, may soon take a crack at a longtime obsession of biological researchers: Deploying genetically modified mosquitoes to fight disease.
A Google engineering VP who co-created the Chrome browser says he wants to start a project that would genetically engineer mosquito's to help eradicate diseases like malaria and dengue fever. This trial was conducted by the biotech company Oxitec, who genetically modified male mosquitoes to pass on a specific mutation to their offspring — one that kills them before they are able to reproduce or pass on the disease.Read more
Google is dead. Long live Alphabet. The tech company announced that it would rebrand itself as Alphabet – a new holding company whose largest wholly owned subsidiary will be Google.
In a surprise blog post made public after the stock markets closed Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google’s co-founders, announced a radical shake-up of the company’s corporate structure and management, handing control of its core search engine business to rising star Sundar Pichai. The new company, Alphabet, will preside over a collection of companies, the largest of which will be Google. Even the site’s new address also eschewed convention.Read more