Alphabet announced its latest company on Friday, a robotics software company called “Intrinsic.” The segment comes out of X, its “moonshots” division.
Intrinsic said it is developing software tools to make industrial robots easier to use, cheaper and more flexible, so they can expand the reach of consumers who use them. Wendy Tan-White, head of Intrinsic, said in a blog post that the company “is working to unlock the creative and economic potential of industrial robotics for millions more companies, entrepreneurs and developers.”
Alphabet’s X was launched about a decade ago in the hope that it can use new technologies to solve global problems. The so-called moon shot factory has developed a handful of projects so far, including delivery drones and internet balloons. Many of those projects have failed, but Alphabet’s Waymo autonomous car unit may be the most promising.
Intrinsic will operate within Alphabet’s “Other Bets” segment, which has continually been a cash burner. The area lost $ 1.145 billion in revenue of $ 198 million in the first quarter of 2021.
Alphabet’s hope has been to use X as an incubator to build a new growth area for the company outside of its core digital advertising business at Google. But X and the rest of Alphabet’s companies have yet to find a new source of income.
Robotics has been an area of interest for the tech giant, but the projects have failed. The company undertook a spending blitz beginning in 2013, acquiring six robotics startups that were either sold or closed. In early 2019, it was reported that Alphabet was returning to the robotics game. The New York Times said that Google’s revamped robotics program would focus more on simple machines that can perform and learn tasks through machine learning.