Barra joined Google from Nuance in 2008 and quickly climbed ladders to become the vice president of product management for Android. Xiaomi is one of the fastest growing smartphone brands in China that sells Android smartphones with its own skin on top. All of Xiaomi’s phones are sold exclusively online and its latest smartphone sold 100,000 units in 90 seconds and received over 7 million pre-orders.
What makes things awkward, however, is the revelation that Barra was involved in a romantic relationship with another Google employee. However, the relationship ended when the Googler got involved with Google co-founder Sergey Brin, who has since split with his wife of six years, Anne Wojcicki. The report claims that Barra’s resignation and the end of his relationship were unrelated and his resignation was tendered before the relationship ended.
Personal relationships aside, Barra will be a huge win for Xiaomi, which is now looking at venturing beyond China. The company recently launched its products in Hong Kong and Taiwan. Qualcomm Ventures is one of Xiaomi’s investors.