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Alphabet’s drone, balloon units fly out to become independent entities

Over the years, Google parent Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) has been successful in perfecting most of its seemingly whacky ideas through experimentation and developing them into practical solutions. Loon and Wing, two ventures incubated in the company’s research center ‘X’, have emerged as path-breaking innovations though they had raised many eyebrows in the beginning.

Loon, the balloon-laden internet distribution service, and drone-delivery system Wing are graduating from the X lab to operate as independent companies, revealed an informal statement from the company.

“Now that the foundational technology for these projects is built, Loon and Wing are ready to take their products into the world; this is work best done outside of the prototyping-focused environment of X,” said Astro Teller, the CEO of X.

These companies are the latest from X to assume the status of standalone businesses, following the path of Alphabet’s cybersecurity arm Chronicle and autonomous vehicle project Waymo which are in the final stages of commencing full-fledged operation.

Loon and Wing are graduating from Alphabets research lab X to operate as independent companies

Loon, which has completed the trials successfully, will operate as a provider of high-speed internet in areas where the service is either not available or connectivity is poor. That will be achieved by deploying inflated helium balloons high up in the sky, thereby enabling them to cater to users in large areas.

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The other budding enterprise is in the more lucrative sector of drone-supported aerial delivery, a service that is finding many takers nowadays, especially department store operators. Being a product of Alphabet, Wing features the most advanced technologies and offers delivery to almost all destinations.

However, considering the nature of the services they offer, it is unlikely that the companies would immediately start commercial operation. For the time being, their activities will be limited to carrying out experimental tasks. The prospects of Loon and Wing look bright as they are coming from a lab that has an impressive history, except for a couple of failures like Project Tango that was wound up a few years ago.

After retreating from the all-time highs seen at the beginning of the year, Alphabet stock regained strength in the recent weeks and is once again hovering near the peak. The shares gained 1% during Wednesday’s regular session.

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