Co-founder and former chief of Google’s mobile operating system Android, Andy Rubin is leaving Google, the company said. Rubin’s departure comes 18 months after Sundar Pichai took over the Android division. Rubin will be starting a hardware startup incubator interested in building technology products.
After handing over the reigns of Android, Rubin was spearheading Google’s nascent robotics effort and also working on a secret project. The company made a number of high-profile acquisitions in robotics field since. The company insists that it will remain committed to robotics field, and James Kuffner, a research scientist at Google and a member of the robotics group will now lead the division.
“I want to wish Andy all the best with what’s next,” Google CEO Larry Page said in a statement. “With Android he created something truly remarkable—with a billion plus happy users. Thank you.”
The departure of Rubin also comes days after a massive reorganization Google that made Sundar Pichai in charge of most of the key products within Google, including infrastructure, Google Research, and more.
Rubin made the mobile operating system Android as a startup in 2003. As the operating system grew and became more sophisticated, Google acquired it in 2005. Before that, Rubin had also developed Danger, the first cloud-based smartphone around 15 years ago.