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Google is now owned by Alphabet in surprise shake-up

The name Alphabet was chosen because it refers to a collection of letters which make up a language and “is the core of how we index with Google search,” according to Google founder Larry Page

GOOGLE is to be slimmed down as part of a very surprising shake-up that will see it operate under a new parent company called Alphabet.

The search engine, YouTube and Android operating system will remain under the Google brand, while newer businesses, such as its research and investment arms, will work as separate parts of the new conglomerate.

Google doesn't own alphabet.com so abc.xyz is the home of Google's newest company and its homepage displays a message from Google founder and former CEO, and now CEO of Alphabet, Larry Page.

Mr Page's partner Sergey Brin will be president of the umbrella company, and former Android chief Sundar Pichai will replace Mr Page as Google’s new chief executive.

He said the reorganisation would help Google “continue to make big strides on our core mission to organise the world’s information”. And we’re just realising how sinister that sounds.

The company’s mysterious X lab, responsible for developing initiatives such as drone delivery business Project Wing, will now operate under Alphabet, as will its Life Sciences division, which is developing a glucose-sensing contact lens.

Announcing the move on Google’s website, Mr Page said: “We’ve long believed that over time companies tend to get comfortable doing the same thing, just making incremental changes. But in the technology industry, where revolutionary ideas drive the next big growth areas, you need to be a bit uncomfortable to stay relevant.

“Our company is operating well today, but we think we can make it cleaner and more accountable.

“Alphabet is about businesses prospering through strong leaders and independence. In general, our model is to have a strong CEO who runs each business, with Sergey and me in service to them as needed.”

The name was chosen because it refers to a collection of letters which make up a language and “is the core of how we index with Google search,” Mr Page said.

Oh, and spare a thought for the poor soul who owns the @Alphabet handle on Twitter. He had an interesting few hours after the announcement.

But don’t feel too sorry for him. Google – sorry, Alphabet – will probably be offering a fair bit of money for the proper social media branding.

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