Google has announced some major changes to the way the company is organized and in its executive leadership. Both Andy Rubin and Jeff Huber are stepping away from their current positions as their divisions are folded into other business units. However, both men will continue to work for Google.
The Wall Street Journal’s Amir Efrati reported, “Google Inc. executive Jeff Huber stepped aside as head of the Internet giant’s mapping and commerce unit on Wednesday, in a two-part management shift that also saw the chief of the Android unit, Andy Rubin, leave his position, said people familiar with the matter. “
Jessica Guynn with the Los Angeles Times added, “Huber will move to Google X, the lab run by Google co-founder Sergey Brin that is working on experimental projects such as the wearable computer Google Glass and self-driving cars, a person familiar with the situation said…. With Huber’s departure, the mapping division will join the Google search team led by Alan Eustace and the commerce division will move under the advertising group led by Susan Wojcicki.”
Brandon Bailey with the San Jose Mercury News noted, “In a significant changing of the guard, Google (GOOG) said Wednesday that Android chief Andy Rubin, who built the company’s phenomenally successful mobile software business, will step aside and the head of the company’s Chrome division will oversee Android as well. While the move was a surprise for many, analysts said it was logical for the company to combine two of its fastest-growing software divisions under one executive, Sundar Pichai, as they serve increasingly overlapping functions.”
Google is also continuing its efforts to reduce its number of products and services. According to Reuters, “Google Inc is to retire Google Reader in July, it said on Wednesday, citing declining usage for the application that aggregates content served by web feeds. ‘There are two simple reasons for this: usage of Google Reader has declined, and as a company we are pouring all of our energy into fewer products,’ Google said in its official blog.”