Re/Code reported on Sunday afternoon that Google paid an estimated $400 million for Deep Mind, a startup artificial intelligence company. Since the report, sources have upped that price to over $500 million. The acquisition comes as no surprise as many tech giants are expanding into the deep learning space. Facebook hired NYU Professor Yann LeCunn to head their artificial intelligence lab and Yahoo has brought on photo analysis expert LookFlow to lead their deep learning sector.
While Facebook, Yahoo and others continue to try and keep up, no company is expanding their reach like Google. On January 13th, Google paid $3.2 billion in cash for Nest. The acquisition put Google in the heart of the smart-home space as Next specializes in the Learning Thermostat and smart smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. The partnership will provide the current CEO of Nest, Tony Fadell, with the resources to invest in hardware and software updates that can be sold on a global scale.
Deep Mind and Nest are still just the tip of the buying iceberg. In the last seven months alone, Google has purchased eight robotic companies. The biggest purchase was Boston Dynamics, a company that supplies robotic technology to the United States government.
Kenneth Wisnefski, President and CEO of WebiMax, an industry leading Internet marketing firm believes what Google is doing is unprecedented territory saying, “I believe Google is trying to expand its reach for the right reasons, but the world has never seen a company that could have so much access to the lives and data of the general public.”
It looks like Google expected concerns over their power in the deep learning sector as they recently leaked information regarding the development of an ethics board to ensure they aren’t abusing artificial intelligence. However, much like the details regarding what Deep Mind offers them, the details of the ethics board are mysterious.
According to Wisnefski:
• Google’s power and bankroll allows them to invest in projects that may not be profitable for nearly a decade.
• Google is working to make our lives more computer-centric. Their list of ways includes: robotic cars, smart homes and robotic humanoids that can take on daily work.
• When it comes to search, the Hummingbird Update provided a nice glimpse into the direction of Google. The company is not only trying to answer your questions, but anticipate and fill needs in advance.
Ken Wisnefski is available to discuss the future of Google, what it means for the future of businesses and whether or not the greater public should be concerned. If you are interested in scheduling an interview with Wisnefski, please contact Andrew Schetter at firstname.lastname@example.org or 888-932-4629 x117.