Summary List Placement
After posting gangbuster Q3 results, Google parent Alphabet held its usual earnings call to discuss numbers and take questions from analysts.
While most of the questions focused on search, ecommerce, and the recent Justice Department lawsuit, one question around hardware sparked a particularly intriguing response from CEO Sundar Pichai.
Asked about Google’s hardware strategy, Pichai said the company was doing “some deeper investments.”
“Some of it takes two to three years to come together,” he said.
More interesting was his next remark: “I’m excited about the road map ahead and next year you will see us lean more into, you know, some of our deeper investments will come into play there.”
What was he referring to? There are several things in Google’s hardware pipeline which we think could be classed as “deeper investments,” assuming Pichai was still referring to hardware there.
The biggest could be Google’s own chipset, which Axios first reported on earlier this year. According to the report, Google is working on its own processor to power future versions of its Pixel smartphone as soon as next year. It also plans to use the chip – built in partnership with Samsung and codenamed “Whitechapel” – for its Chromebooks further down the line.
This seems like the obvious one, and would certainly count as a “deep” investment on Google’s part.
It may also be a reference to something being cooked up by its hardware’s R&D lab. As 9to5google suggests, it could be something like the Soli radar, which was first rolled out in smartphones and was put in the new Nest thermostat this year.
Google’s hardware boss Rick Osterloh told The Verge earlier this year that Soli, which was removed from the latest Pixel 5 smartphone, will eventually return to a Google phone.
Finally, Google has been making a lot of moves in the wearables space. It’s currently trying to acquire Fitbit (pending legislative approval) and this year snapped up Canadian smart glasses maker North.
The latter was a strong hint that it could be making a glasses product of its own, although it’s less clear if that particularly investment will pay off quite so soon.
Apple is said to be building a pair of its own glasses, as well as an AR/VR headset, the latter of which could arrive as soon as next year, according to reports.SEE ALSO: Google CEO Sundar Pichai tried to calm investors concerned about antitrust scrutiny — and whether losing a key Apple search deal would be a ‘code red’
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