Facebook Follows Amazon, Google Into Drones With $60 Million Purchase

Mar 4 2014, 2:33pm CST | by

Facebook Follows Amazon, Google Into Drones With $60 Million Purchase
Photo Credit: Forbes Business

Time to hop on the drone bandwagon — before it flies off without you.

Facebook, in a deal first reported by TechCrunch and CNBC, is buying drone maker Titan Aerospace for $60 million. It may not be anywhere close to the $19 billion Mark Zuckerberg spent on messaging service WhatsApp, but it could be another important piece in Facebook’s mission to bring the Internet (and therefore Facebook) to the developing world.

Facebook follows Amazon and Google into the robotics fray with this purchase. Amazon, who bought Kiva Systems for $775 million  in 2012 to put robots in its distribution centers, debuted its “Prime Air” service to deliver products by drone last December. Google bought robotics firm Boston Dynamics around the same time and has been refining its self-driving car technology.

Each tech giant sees robotics as the wave of the future, although the companies are using the technology to varying ends. Facebook’s goal could be to provide wireless Internet to under-served parts of the globe. Titan Aerospace makes solar-powered drones that can fly for as long as five years at near-orbital heights. These drones can relay communications and take on other jobs usually performed by satellites, at a fraction of the cost.

While the purchase signals possible growth potential for Facebook (the social network’s stock is up 1.6% on the day), it also looks good for other independent robotics companies that could be snapped up in future deals. iRobot stock, for example, is up 2.99% on the day, and over 25% year to date.

Follow Brian on Facebook and Twitter.

Calling All Drones

Source: Forbes Business

 
 

Don't miss ...

 

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/30" rel="author">Forbes</a>
Forbes is among the most trusted resources for the world's business and investment leaders, providing them the uncompromising commentary, concise analysis, relevant tools and real-time reporting they need to succeed at work, profit from investing and have fun with the rewards of winning.

 

blog comments powered by Disqus

Latest stories

Indian helping to light up Gambia (Diaspora Feature)
Banjul (Gambia), Nov 22 (IANS) Like many Indians who are proving to be philanthropists around Africa, Ram Mohan has set up a social business called Comafrique Intelizon Initiative and has embarked on the replacement of candles in villages in the Gambia with solar lights from India.
 
 
Leopards in human areas not conflict animals: Study
New Delhi, Nov 22 (IANS) Leopards in human areas are not always "stray" or "conflict" animals but residents with strategies to thrive in human dominated areas, says the first GPS-based study of leopards in India.
 
 
Golf courses are hotspots for ticks
Washington, Nov 22 (IANS) Golf courses are prime habitats for ticks, the tiny bloodsucking creatures, says a new study.
 
 
How tweets can gauge unemployment levels
London, Nov 22 (IANS) How people tweet during day and night can be used to gauge unemployment levels, a new study suggests.
 
 
 

Latest from the Network

In-form golfer Lahiri leads field at King's Cup
Khon Kaen (Thailand), Nov 22 (IANS) Indian golfer Anirban Lahiri will headline a stellar field at next week's King's Cup which will feature over 30 Asian Tour champions. Lahiri, who has already won twice this season...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Srikanth loses in Hong Kong Open semis
Hong Kong, Nov 22 (IANS) Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth's good run in the $350,000 Hong Kong Open Super Series came to an end as he lost to top seed Chen Long of China in the men's singles semifinal here Saturday....
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Indian helping to light up Gambia (Diaspora Feature)
Banjul (Gambia), Nov 22 (IANS) Like many Indians who are proving to be philanthropists around Africa, Ram Mohan has set up a social business called Comafrique Intelizon Initiative and has embarked on the replacement of...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
'Whelan should quit football'
London, Nov 22 (IANS) Stephen Perry, chairman of England's 48 Group Club, has said that under-fire Wigan Athletic chairman Dave Whelan should quit after being accused of antisemitism and racism. "Mr Whelan needs to...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Fudadin to replace Bravo in Windies Test squad
St. John's (Antigua), Nov 22 (IANS/CMC) Guyana left-hander Assad Fudadin will replace Darren Bravo in the 15-man Test squad for the tour of South Africa, the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) announced. The 29-year-old...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Cardiff City owner accuses Wigan chairman, manager of racism
LONDON, Nov 22 (IANS) English football club Cardiff City owner Vincent Tan has accused Wigan counterpart Dave Whelan and newly-appointed manager Malky Mackay of being racists. The Malaysian businessman, who is a...
Read more on Sport Balla
 
Leopards in human areas not conflict animals: Study
New Delhi, Nov 22 (IANS) Leopards in human areas are not always "stray" or "conflict" animals but residents with strategies to thrive in human dominated areas, says the first GPS-based study of leopards in India. The...
Read more on Politics Balla
 
Burj Khalifa, the site for world's highest selfie
London, Nov 22 (IANS) Taking the selfie phenomenon to a new level, a 47-year-old British photographer captured an image of himself on top of Dubai's Burj Khalifa, the tallest man-made structure in the world. Taking...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
'Exodusa' my biggest project: Ridley Scott
Los Angeles, Nov 22 (IANS) Filmmaker Ridley Scott, popular for his work in "Gladiator", "Aliensa and "Prometheus", says his upcoming English film "Exodus: Gods and Kings" is the biggest project of his career even...
Read more on Celebrity Balla
 
Nisha Desai Biswal headed to India ahead of Obama visit
Washington, Nov 22 (IANS) US Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia Nisha Desai Biswal is heading to India Monday ahead of President Barack Obama's January visit to join India's Republic Day parade as chief...
Read more on Politics Balla