The Washington PostThe Washington Post

The age of the Silicon Valley 'moonshot' is over

By Gerrit De Vynck, Caroline O'Donovan and Naomi Nix

02 Mar 2023 · 6 min read

Editor's Note

Big Tech’s cost-cutting and layoffs show that these companies have given up on their "moonshot dreams" and have moved on into middle age, according to this sharp analysis in The Post.

Eight years ago, Google's founders split the company up into separate entities and named the collection Alphabet. The idea was to separate the core business - the company's giant advertising machine that made it one of the most powerful corporations in the world - from the side projects that needed time to develop but could one day become Google's next big moneymaker.

But that next big moneymaker hasn't materialized. Revenue still comes overwhelmingly from advertising. Google has shuttered most of its so-called "moonshots" - from internet-delivering balloons to glucose-measuring contact lenses.

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