Although Google is known for being a software company, rumor has it, that the search giant just might be getting into the hardware business. It’s actually more than just rumors as Mercury News out of San Jose,California has been digging up information on Google’s building plans. These buildings are thought to be the upcoming homes of a number of hardware testing labs. The labs with blacked-out windows and anechoic chambers are said to be ideal for hardware development. Who would have guessed anechoic (echo-free) chambers? In a related development, Google is buying Motorola Mobility, originator of the flip phone. For now Google is somewhat mum on the subject of the labs and a top secret ProjectX, so the outside world is mainly involved in educated guessing.
Hardware is at the very least equally important as software. Customers choose devices visually, according to appealing design elements. The look and feel of a phone or a tablet is critical to today’s savvy consumer. Consequently, getting into the hardware business gives Google certain advantages over just being a software company. The company can solidify a more complete identity for the Google brand. Its software and hardware are unified. Additionally, as a software only company, it needed to constantly work at convincing hardware makers to adopt its Android system. In the future it will be like Apple, able to control both sides of the business. Those anechoic labs are also thought to be the testing ground for Google’s own home entertainment device that could stream music throughout a home, for instance. It could be argued that once software is written it can be copied to infinity – which isn’t technically true else there wouldn’t be software updates. On the other hand, the hardware business presents different challenges in terms of design, manufacturing and inventory control. But ultimately, Google’s software in Google’s hardware might translate to world domination.