If the Android fanbase has a singular hero figure, it’s Andy Rubin. Having spearheaded the platform in 2003 – long before Google was involved – his fingerprints have been all over Android from the start. Today, though, Rubin is stepping aside from Android, handing the reins to Senior Vice President of Chrome and Google Apps, Sundar Pichai.
The news comes in a blog post from CEO Larry Page, who at least frames the move as Rubin’s decision. Rubin will apparently stay at Google in some unknown capacity:
- Having exceeded even the crazy ambitious goals we dreamed of for Android – and with a really strong leadership team in place – Andy’s decided it’s time to hand over the reins and start a new chapter at Google. Andy, more moonshots please!
Android + Chrome OS?
Pichai’s move to the Android throne raises questions about an eventual convergence of Android and Chrome OS. With Google trying to spark touchscreen integration with the Chromebook Pixel, perhaps Page and company see Chrome OS absorbing more of Android’s qualities – or even an expansion of Android to support laptops.
At the present moment, though, Android is a much more important property to Google. It could be that Pichai is simply the best person for the job – with proven leadership inside the company.
We reached out to Google for comment, but they don't have anything more to share at this time. We'll update if that changes.