Google’s Area 120 is an in-house incubator where employees work on experimental new products that may or may not be released to the general public. Some of Google’s biggest successes including Gmail, AdSense, and Google News started as Area 120 projects.

Now Google is allegedly scaling back the focus its incubator program. Sources tell Bloomberg and TechCrunch that the company has canceled or reorganized multiple Area 120 projects and told people working on those projects to find new jobs at Google soon or leave the company.

Some Area 120 projects

According to TechCrunch, Google is killing off half of the projects currently hosted at Area 120, slashing the number of active projects from 14 to just 7. Most of those had yet to launch publicly, but one was already live: Qaya is a tool that lets content creators make a personal storefront. It’s been available in early access since last year, but it looks like that’s as far as it’s likely to go at this point.

TechCrunch and Bloomberg both indicate that the Area 120 projects Google isn’t killing off are all related to artificial intelligence in some way, as Google continues to prioritize AI moving forward.

Area 120 projects have always been a pretty tiny portion of Google’s business. TechCrunch reports that Google has over 170,000 employees, but Area 120 had just about 170 at the start of the year, and fewer than 100 now. But like the incubator could be home to even smaller, more mission-focused teams from here on out.

Support Liliputing

Liliputing's primary sources of revenue are advertising and affiliate links (if you click the "Shop" button at the top of the page and buy something on Amazon, for example, we'll get a small commission).

But there are several ways you can support the site directly even if you're using an ad blocker* and hate online shopping.

Contribute to our Patreon campaign


Contribute via PayPal

* If you are using an ad blocker like uBlock Origin and seeing a pop-up message at the bottom of the screen, we have a guide that may help you disable it.

Subscribe to Liliputing via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 9,544 other subscribers