John Krafcik, the CEO of Google’s self-driving car subsidiary, just announced that Google is opening a large facility in Novi, Michigan.
This makes sense for the same reasons that almost all car manufacturers now have Silicon Valley offices. A wide array of people and companies that Google would like to work with are Michigan-based.
Amid all the speculation of whether Detroit or Silicon Valley will win the car war, it’s worth considering that maybe they’re both around for the long haul. Detroit could remain the manufacturing center of America, with Silicon Valley becoming a center of automotive software development. A lot of companies would maintain facilities in both areas.
The major exception to this trend is Tesla. As far as I know, Tesla does not have a large Michigan presence. That raises the question of how well Tesla can collaborate with all of the partners that Google is hoping to reach by being in Michigan themselves.