At the Google I/O developer conference today, Mary Lou Jepsen bemoaned the lack of hardware innovation in the tech world.
“There’s no more silicon in Silicon Valley. It’s all iPhone apps.
“For the devices we use … the funding models are completely screwed up,” she said. “Angel funding isn’t sufficient for hardware.”
And that’s at least part of why she’s working on a hush-hush hardware project for Google X.
Google X is the division of Google that produced Google Glass. It’s run by Google cofounder Sergei Brin and operates as a skunkworks within the company — a sort of magic factory where ideas are shoot-for-the-moon big and projects are shrouded in secrecy.
Jepsen said she’s not too comfortable with “the sharp elbows and politics of larger companies.” But we’ve heard that Google X operates a bit more like a startup within Google. Her coworkers at X include Android founder Andy Rubin and former Google Maps chief Jeff Huber.
“Google X is the hardware division of Google,” Jepsen said. And while she couldn’t say too much about the hardware followup to Glass, she gave the I/O audience a few clues.