Google made big news recently when it announced Google Calico, a new venture that would apply “some longer term, moonshot thinking around healthcare and biotechnology,” putting the minds at Google toward the problems of aging and illness.
Calico is far from Google’s first venture into health or wellness, however. The company’s (ultimately failed) PHR venture Google Health was one high profile example, as were 3D anatomy-viewer Google Body and Google Flu Trends. The company has always had a background participation in activity tracking, debuting an Android app called MyTracks in 2009, and incorporating passive activity tracking into first Google Now and then the Android OS in general. And perhaps most importantly, Google has introduced health-related features into its original core offering: search. As well it should, since Pew data indicates that eight in 10 health inquiries start at a search engine like Google.
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