Amid Lay-Offs, Google Now Fires Robots Who Cleaned Trash: Report

In January, Alphabet Inc announced that it was eliminating 6 per cent of its workforce.

Recent layoffs have impacted thousands of workers across the globe. However, it appears that even robots are now a part of it. Alphabet’s newest subsidiary, Everyday Robots, is a team that trained over a hundred wheeled, one-armed robots to clean cafeteria tables, separate trash and open doors. However, Google has announced its closure as a part of budget cuts sweeping the parent company, according to a report in Wired.

Denise Gamboa, Director of Marketing and Communications for Everyday Robots, said, “Everyday Robots will no longer be a separate project within Alphabet. Some of the technology and part of the team will be consolidated into existing robotics efforts within Google Research.” 

It was a subsidiary of Alphabet’s X moonshot lab, a secret research and development facility established by Google in 2010. According to robotics experts, each of its robots is likely to cost tens of thousands of dollars. 

The outlet added that these costs were extremely expensive for Alphabet, whose more speculative “other bets” such as Everyday Robots and Waymo lost $6.1 billion last year. Alphabet’s overall profit fell 21 per cent to $60 billion last year as Google advertising spending slowed. Since then, activist investors have been clamouring for the company to make cuts.

It is to be noted that Alphabet has not disclosed which Everyday Robots assets and team members will be transferred to other research teams.

Also Read: 7 People Fired By Google Come Together To Form New Company

In January, Alphabet Inc announced that it was eliminating about 12,000 jobs or six per cent of its workforce. CEO Sundar Pichai told staff in a memo that the firm had reviewed its products, people and priorities, leading to job cuts across geographies and tech. It had rapidly expanded for better times but now faced “a different economic reality”.

“The fact that these changes will impact the lives of Googlers weighs heavily on me, and I take full responsibility for the decisions that led us here,” said Mr Pichai. 

The job losses at the company affected recruiting teams, some corporate functions along with engineering and product teams.

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