Automaker Hyundai acquires robot company Boston Dynamics. The South Korean company confirms this. Since the end of last year, there have been rumours that Hyundai wanted to take over the company, which Google parent Alphabet previously owned.
Hyundai believes that Boston Dynamics’ robotic technology could be used to develop self-driving vehicles and small aircraft transportation in urban areas.
Hyundai will acquire 80 percent of Boston Dynamics for an undisclosed amount. The remaining 20 percent will remain in possession of Softbank, the Japanese telecom company and tech investor.
Boston Dynamics is known for the two-legged human-like Atlas robot and the four-legged dog-like robots Spot and BigDog. The company grew out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and was originally a developer of robots for potential military use. Google bought the company in 2013 and sold it to Softbank four years later.
Boston Dynamics says it is not making a profit. Videos of the company’s robots have been viewed millions of times on YouTube. Hyundai already makes robots for industrial use.