Google’s Alphabet: 5 things you must know

 Business Insider | Oct 3, 2015, 01.14 PM IST
Unravelling Alphabet

Google’s Alphabet: 5 things you must know

Google’s Alphabet: 5 things you must know

Say hello to Alphabet, Google’s new parent company that is boldly restructuring the ABCs of the search engine giant and its subsidiaries.

Alphabet is meant to be a cleaner, more accountable holding company, says Google co-founder Larry Page. He’ll act as the Alphabet CEO, while Sergey Brin acts as the president.

Unravelling Alphabet

Do you think the new name “Alphabet” is a bit jarring, considering you’re so used to talking and typing out “Google” every single day? You’re not alone.

“Don’t worry, we’re still getting used to the name too!” said Page in the conclusion of his letter.

Whether the name sticks might not matter. Google is going to remain the focus of the tech world for the time being, with Search, Android and YouTube under its belt. We’ll still be calling it the new Google Nexus 5 and Google Nexus 6 later this year, not the Alphabet Nexus phones.

Alphabet’s priorities are on the future, so there’s certainly time to get used to the new naming convention and the wide scope of what it does.

Why Google co-founders made this change?

Google is now an Alphabet company, the biggest of the new brand, but still one of many. That’s an abrupt change and a bit confusing for many people.

“Sergey and I are seriously in the business of starting new things,” explained Alphabet CEO Larry Page.

The Alphabet plan is to have more management scale by appointing strong CEOs for each business, and running various operations independently without them having to be very related.

Page and Sergey can take on more world-changing moonshots, and mature them to the level of Google and Android, now that the search engine and operating system are ready for other people to run.

Alphabet's key projects

Calico: This is Alphabet’s most life-altering project with the mission of tackling age and extended human lifespan. No big deal. If there’s one company that can find the fountain of youth, it’s one that owns Google.

Fiber: It is also going to be managed separately, piping in super-fast 1GB internet and cable television into homes at an affordable price. Hopefully this means deployment picks up.

Nest Labs: With CEO Tony Fadell at the helm, Nest Labs has changed the way we run our thermostats, smoke alarm and security cameras. A more cohesive smart home may be in the works.

Google X: Google X is where the company’s most secret projects are developed, is being spun-off into Alphabet, too. This may mean Google’s self-driving car, drone delivery project Wing and Google contact lenses are now closer to reality.

How Google changes with Alphabet?

Alphabet doesn’t spell “goodbye” for Google, even though many of the more exciting projects are no longer under its robotic umbrella.

Search, Android, Chrome, YouTube, and Google Maps remain at the subsidiary. The same applies to new machine learning processes like Google Photos and Google Now.

What it does change is who is in charge. Sundar Pichai is the new CEO of Google, after serving as Google’s senior vice president of products and helming Google IO 2015.

Larry Page on Sundar Pichai

Now that it’s slimmed down, Google should be easier to run and expand, especially when you consider some of its services have their own CEOs, like YouTube.

According to Google co-founder, Alphabet CEO, “this new structure will allow us to keep tremendous focus on the extraordinary opportunities we have inside of Google. A key part of this is Sundar Pichai. Sundar has been saying the things I would have said (and sometimes better!) for quite some time now, and I’ve been tremendously enjoying our work together. He has really stepped up since October of last year, when he took on product and engineering responsibility for our internet businesses.”

Larry adds in his blog,”Sergey and I have been super excited about his progress and dedication to the company. And it is clear to us and our board that it is time for Sundar to be CEO of Google. I feel very fortunate to have someone as talented as he is to run the slightly slimmed down Google and this frees up time for me to continue to scale our aspirations. I have been spending quite a bit of time with Sundar, helping him and the company in any way I can, and I will of course continue to do that.”

Page adds,”Google itself is also making all sorts of new products, and I know Sundar will always be focused on innovation—continuing to stretch boundaries. I know he deeply cares that we can continue to make big strides on our core mission to organize the world’s information.”

 

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