Alphabet rebrands its health division Google Life Sciences, now named Verily

Alphabet, the holding company in charge of holding Google, has announced a new division: Verily. Formerly known as Google Life Sciences, the rebranded team will move away from Google and become its own independent division.

Verily used to be part of Google X, the secret lab where moonshots were tested. It will continue its work developing technologies to track health and cure disease, but will do so without Google X leader Astro Teller overseeing projects.

The new CEO of Verily is Andy Conrad, also the head of Life Sciences. Alphabet has kept most of the former division leaders as newly minted CEOs, avoiding major management upheavals.

Verily will be separate from Calico, another health division focused on longevity. Arthur Levinson will continue to run Calico as an independent branch of Alphabet.

In an introductory video for Verily, the team talks about stopping disease before its spreads, being proactive rather than reactive with healthcare, and offering personal healthcare that understands your body.

“Our multidisciplinary teams have access to advanced research tools, large-scale computing power, and unique technical expertise,” says Verily on its website. “We work with partners from across the industry and many fields of research to develop new technology, launch studies, and start companies.”

It all seems like a bunch of vague ideas, but Google Life Sciences has developed a few products that show potential as the future of healthcare. Contact lenses that can track glucose levels, a spoon for people suffering from tremors, a disease detection platform, and a health-tracking wristband have all come from the division.

Google Life Sciences also conducted an experiment to see what the perfect human would look like, using genetic and molecular information from donors — it is named the Baseline Study.

Alphabet chief executive Larry Page has talked before about how important healthcare is and how Google might be able to do more with less regulation in the United States. Speaking at Vinod Kholsa’s VC event, Page said that if the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, or HIPAA, could be amended to reduce the regulation of medical records in the U.S., it would save 10,000 lives in the first year alone, since medical researchers would be able to data mine more effectively.

While not everyone wants their medical records made available to researchers, Page argues that the information would be anonymous and would help researchers obtain meaningful results. Various researchers working on Apple’s ResearchKit share this sentiment, claiming that being able to mine more data would increase the chances of finding cures to diseases.

Product Review

The Division 2 brings the most fun we've ever had to Washington, D.C.

After 55 hours with The Division 2, it’s clear that Ubisoft has improved on the original in almost every way. The world is richly detailed, the story missions are wonderful, gunplay and enemy design are great, and the endgame content is…

The Division 2 offers nothing but a funhouse mirror of America

Tom Clancy's The Division 2 improves on the design shortcomings of the original game in several different ways, but its version of Washington D.C. is completely removed from reality.

The Division 2 is another loot shooter with a dull story. Does it matter?

The Division 2 has a story to tell. It's not a good story. It's not told very well. But by-golly, The Division 2 is going to make you sit your ass down and listen whether you want to or not.

How to get the most out of agent builds and specializations in The Division 2

The Division 2 has an intricate loot system to let you fine tune your agent to fit your play style. In our builds and specializations guide, we'll walk you through all of the stats you should pay attention to when tinkering with gear.

Fitbit Versa Lite versus Fitbit Versa: How are they different?

Fitbit took the best of its popular Versa smartwatch and removed some elements to create the new Versa Lite, an even more affordable entry-level smartwatch. How does the Versa Lite differ from the original Versa? Read on to find out.
Health & Fitness

AncestryDNA price drop makes it more affordable to discover your family origins

In step with St. Patrick's Day's emphasis on roots, AncestryDNA cut its price for a DNA-based ancestry search by $40. Send in a saliva sample to receive an estimated ethnicity breakdown, locations of origin, and possible living relatives.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Write music with your voice, make homemade cheese

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

Bowflex’s spring sale has limited-time deals on treadmills, home gyms, and more

Gyms membership are expensive which is home gyms are a great alternative. When it comes to home gyms, Bowflex designs great fitness training equipment for your home so you can get the full gym experience. Right now Bowflex is offering huge…

This Bowflex promo code will save you up to $1,000 on training equipment

The Bowflex HVT machine is designed to fit anyone's needs. Whether you're getting back into shape or you train every day, Bowflex's HVT, which stands for hybrid velocity training, combines both cardio and working out in one machine. Now you…

Sony could use a robot to turn your PlayStation into a fitness machine

Sony submitted a patent application for a robotic device equipped with a camera to assist in your workout. The images included suggest that the device will work with your PlayStation console.

Stay fit and save cash with our top 10 affordable Fitbit alternatives

As much as we love Fitbits, they're rather expensive. If all you want is a simple activity tracker, however, then check out these great cheap Fitbit alternatives. With offerings from brands like Garmin, you don't need to pay full price.

Yamaha’s Wabash ebike takes on gravel, single track, and more

The Wabash gravel ebike from Yamaha gives riders a versatile and powerful option for riding trails, pavement, mud, sand, dirt, and more, with plenty of range and power for all-day adventures.

Even older Apple Watches could be effective at spotting heart conditions

The Apple Watch Series 4 is known for detecting heart conditions like atrial fibrillation thanks to having an electrocardiograph feature. It turns out that older Apple Watches could be effective at tracking AFib, too.
Health & Fitness

Under Armour HOVR is more than a running shoe, it’s a fitness tracker

Under Armour HOVR running shoes bring more to the table than just a comfortable fit. With UA's Record Sensor technology, you can track distance, duration, and even the path you take as you run.