Alphabet Taps Brakes on Drone Project

Alphabet Taps Brakes on Drone Project, Nixing Starbucks Partnership

Project Wing, born inside the Google X research lab, is the latest Alphabet project to be target of financial restraint.
A Project Wing prototype during a test flight.

Source: Project Wing, Alphabet iNc.

The latest Google drones have just started taking flight in the real world. But the team behind the technology is slowing down, trimming headcount and shelving initiatives as the experimental unit becomes the latest target of tightening budgets across parent company Alphabet Inc.

Project Wing, a unit of Alphabet’s X research lab, nixed a partnership with coffee giant Starbucks Corp., according to people familiar with the decision. Following the departure of project leader Dave Vos in October, the unit also froze hiring and began asking some staff to seek jobs elsewhere in the company, according to some of those people. They asked not to be identified speaking about private company moves.

Read more…