Sci-tech

Google is reportedly scaling back its laptop and tablet divisions

Google is reportedly scaling back its laptop and tablet divisions

Affected employees have been instructed to seek temporary roles within other Google or Alphabet teams, raising questions about Google's future hardware plans.

Google's computer-focused hardware efforts may not be panning out for the company like its smartphone business has, as Business Insider reports it has asked staff on those projects to temporarily find other work within the company.

BI writes that Google has started an ample restructuring process in the Create division, which is responsible for creating laptops and tablets like the Pixelbook and the Pixel Slate.

According to one source, "a bunch of stuff was in the works" that will most likely now be shelved as part of "roadmap cutbacks" - essentially ending work on products that were previously planned for late 2019 and beyond.

Google's hardware divisions have never really made an impact anywhere near that of their revenue for ad cash.

If true, it's certainly a dramatic about-face for a company whose hardware head - Rick Osterloh, hired from Motorola back in 2016 - said at the time that the company would be in the hardware business for the long term. Given the competition within the laptop market, this isn't too surprising.

Google cracked down on 2.3 billion bad ads a year ago
The company provides examples such as for-profit bail bond providers, which it bans from advertising through its ad network. That's about double the number as previous year , Scott Spencer, Google's director of sustainable ads, said in a blog post.

Today, the Create division is responsible for the Pixelbook laptop and Pixel Slate tablet amongst the company's wider swath of "Made by Google" products.

The Pixelbook raised eyebrows at its launch, given its high-cost (starting at $999) relative to its limited capabilities (the Pixelbook is a Chromebook, meaning it runs on Google's Chrome OS software and is only capable of using internet-based applications).

Manufacturing jobs have reportedly not been affected which implies that Google is only reassessing its plans for future products and the near-term devices will be launched as per plans.

Google makes most its money on advertisements and services.

Google is the disputed king when it comes to software and associated technologies, but the same can not be said for hardware. But it looks like the company might be slimming down its hardware portfolio, as the firm is reportedly moving employees from its tablet and laptop division.