Moonshot projects Loon and Wing become independent businesses under Alphabet umbrella

Rural internet project Loon and delivery drone project Wing were moonshot today and will become independent companies

Rural internet project Loon and delivery drone project Wing were moonshot today and will become independent companies

Loon and Wing are following the same path taken by the self-driving auto company Waymo, which also got its start inside Google X.

It's graduation day as two X (formerly Google X) moonshot projects have been promoted to independent business status under the Alphabet umbrella.

As with others in the "Other Bets" category, the two projects will continue the missions they started at X. Loon, which uses high-altitude balloons to blanket regions with wireless coverage, will continue to work with carriers worldwide to provide Internet access to under-connected and unconnected people.

Meanwhile, Wing is developing a drone delivery system as well as an air traffic management platform to route robotic drones safely through the skies.

The big picture: Unlike when they started as X projects, Loon and Wing now seem a long way from insane.

"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 X CEO Astro Teller in the announcement.

Loon and Wing are taking their place alongside X's other "graduates", including the cybersecurity company Chronicle, the self-driving auto company Waymo and Verily Life Sciences.

Both Loon and Wing will "graduate" from Alphabet's secretive research subsidiary dubbed "X".

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