Google has changed the way we do a lot of things in our everyday lives. From Google searches to Android and even self-driving cars, Google has achieved some great feats. Today, Google will be attempting to take its dominance a step further by announcing their new company Sidewalk Labs.
Sidewalk Labs will focus on helping cities function better. According to CEO Larry Page, they will do so by using technology to improve transportation to lower the cost of living, reduce the amount of energy being used, and help governments operate more efficiently.
Google is not alone in this lofty endeavor. Google has appointed Dan Doctoroff, former CEO of Bloomberg and Deputy Mayor for Economic Development for the City of New York, to help drive the initiative. With Dan’s expertise in technology and city development, Sidewalk Labs will be in good hands.
In the press release, Larry Page states:
By improving urban technology, it’s possible to significantly improve the lives of billions of people around the world. With Sidewalk, we want to supercharge existing efforts in areas such as housing, energy, transportation and government to solve real problems that city-dwellers face every day. Every time I talk with Dan I feel an amazing sense of opportunity because of his passion for all the ways technology can help transform cities to be more livable, flexible and vibrant. And when you combine that with his experience as an investor, in NYC government, and as CEO of the large information company Bloomberg LP, I can’t imagine a better person to lead these efforts.
While we do not know exactly how much Google has invested in Sidewalk Labs, Larry explains that Google has made a “modest investment.” “Sidewalk Labs is very different from Google’s core businesses”, explains Larry. His hope is that Sidewalk Labs will be able to make the types of differences Google X and Calico have made thus far.
Doctoroff is also extremely passionate about the changes Sidewalk Labs can help make in cities across the United States.
We are at the beginning of a historic transformation in cities. At a time when the concerns about urban equity, costs, health and the environment are intensifying, unprecedented technological change is going to enable cities to be more efficient, responsive, flexible and resilient.
Helping improve the lives of billions might be a huge goal to accomplish, but not many companies have the same number of accomplishments as Google. In the coming months and years, it will be exciting to see what partnerships and technologies Sidewalk Labs will make to change the lives of those in large cities.
What are your thoughts? Do you think Google has bit off more than they can chew with Sidewalk Labs? Let us know what you think in the comment section below.