The software colossus Google’s Labs branch has launched a new blockchain-based division. Other distributed computing and data storage technologies will be handled by the division.
While Google has been leery of associating with any type of cryptocurrency, Bill Ready, the firm’s president of commerce, announced on January 19 that the business was keeping a close eye on the space.
Blockchain Division Launched by Google
As part of its Labs department, Google, one of the world’s largest software businesses, is developing a new blockchain section. The blockchain division will be led by Shivakumar Venkataraman, a Google engineering vice president. The group will work on “blockchain and other next-gen distributed computing and data storage technologies,” according to an email obtained by Bloomberg.
While the company has been participating in a number of blockchain projects, it has avoided being associated with any single cryptocurrency. The new blockchain section of the Labs organization will focus on experimenting with these decentralized technologies.
The lab is an experimental branch where all of the AR and VR projects, as well as potential future innovation ventures, are housed. The new Google Labs group also includes Area 120, a Google Labs in-house incubator for ventures.
Some observers perceive this move as a response to how other companies, such as Meta (previously Facebook), are expanding their business models to embrace more of these new advances.
The company has modified its stance on cryptocurrency, which previously prohibited all cryptocurrency-related advertising from its platform, including initial coin offerings, crypto exchanges, cryptocurrency wallets, and cryptocurrency trading advice.
It has since completed a deal with two cryptocurrency exchanges, Coinbase and Bitpay, to allow clients to keep cryptocurrency in digital cards. However, the company continues to refuse to accept bitcoin payments. Last year, the business also announced a collaboration with Bakkt, a digital platform, to allow users to spend cryptocurrency on the Google Pay platform using its card.
Google’s chief of commerce, Bill Ready, spoke about the company’s plans for cryptocurrencies and their possible uses. At the time, Ready stated:
”We spend a lot of attention on cryptocurrency. We’ll develop with the user and merchant demand as it changes”
In addition, the company recently hired Arnold Goldberg, a former Paypal executive, as part of an effort to welcome new services, such as cryptocurrency, on its platform.
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