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Google buys design firm to add style to X lab moonshots

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Google Glass
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Google has whipped out its hefty wallet once again, with a view to improving the look of Google X lab projects like its Glass headset.

The web giant today confirmed the acquisition of Gecko Design, a company with a rich recent history of designing aesthetically pleasing tech for a host of leading tech firms.

Gecko is behind the industrial design of products like the Slingbox television streaming box, the FitBit Ultra tracker, the Sonos Zone Player and the Dell Latitude C400 laptop.

The company and its four employees will now join the top secret X lab where Google dreams up projects like the Glass specs, driverless cars and the Project Loon internet-powered balloon initiative.

Many of those “moonshot” projects, especially Glass has been critiqued for its rather clumsy design, something Gecko can certainly help with.

In an announcement on its website, Gecko president and owner Jacques Gagné said the firm would be working “on a variety of cutting edge products,” but didn’t mention specifics.

Speaking to the Wall Street Journal Gagné said his company will help Google turn its game-changing ideas into real products.

"We're a piece that Google X doesn't necessarily have," the owner said.

"People come to Gecko because they don't know how to turn ideas into real products, especially when it's something that hasn't been done before. That's what attracted Google X."

Google, of course, has already acknowledged its Glass headset needs to add the style element before it’ll be fully embraced by the masses.

The company now offers frames as an accessory, while it also plans to team up with sunglasses makers like Oakley and Ray-Ban in order to make the headgear a more attractive option for fashion-conscious tech fans.

A recently filed patent for the sequel device also showed a much more stylish, unobtrusive design.

Read more: Google Glass: The best videos

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