Google gobbles Gecko Design for Google X projects
As it continues to expand into hardware development, Google acquired Gecko Design, a product design and mechanical engineering company.
Gecko Design, which has designed products for clients such as Hewlett-Packard, Logitech, Dell, wearable device maker Fitbit and furniture company Herman Miller, will be joining the Google X Lab.
No price for the acquisition has been disclosed.
"This is an incredible opportunity for everyone at Gecko," wrote Gecko President and owner Jacques Gagne on the company's website. "We are very excited and honored to join Google(x) and work on a variety of cutting edge projects."
Gecko has worked with other, more popular design labs such as NewDealDesign, frog design, and Fuseprojects, placing its stamp of trademark practical design on a wide range of products.
"Creativity without practicality is useless in consumer product development," Gecko writes on the company's website. "We're aware of the limitations of manufacturing and can intercept potentially costly design glitches early on."
"The language of design and manufacturing is often divergent. Our ability to converge the two by balancing an industrial designer's organic shape with manufacturing realities allows us to create quality products while remaining true to the original design."
Some of the products that Gecko was a part of in designing include the digital music system Sonos Zone Player, the Fitbit calorie tracker, the Dell Latitude C400 laptop, the Logitech Freedom 2.4 cordless joystick, and a wide range of HP products that include monitors, laptops and TVs.
Google is heavily investing in the Google X Lab, which is the research lab of the company that is working on Google's most ambitious projects, which the company refers to as "moon shots." Google's foray into hardware development has the company starting up projects that include the Google Glass eyewear and the Google Car Project for driverless cars.
Google Glass is trying to shed its geeky image as the company is looking to bring the product into the mainstream. Earlier in the year in May, Google hired former Gap and Calvin Klein executive Ivy Ross to help with design development for the groundbreaking device. Google has also forged partnerships with the Luxottica Group, which is the company that owns Oakley and Ray-Ban, to aid the company in designing and manufacturing Google Glass frames.
The Google Car Project, on the other hand, has been sidetracked as new rules by the California Department of Motor Vehicles has forced Google to add a steering wheel and pedal controls to the driverless car while it is being tested in public roads in California.
Google also acquired Makani Power last year, a company that specializes in developing wind turbines.