Andy Rubin has decided to step down as the head of Google’s Android division. He will be handing the reins over to Sundar Pichai who will take over Android in addition to his work with Chrome and Apps, according to a post on Google’s official blog by CEO Larry Page.
Page said Rubin would be starting a new chapter at Google although there was no mention of his new role moving forward. Rubin first approached the search giant in 2004 to peddle an open-source operating system that he believed would drive innovation across the mobile industry. As Page points out in the blog post, most people thought he was nuts but his insight struck a chord with Google.
At the time, Google had a closet full of phones and they were building software pretty much on a per-device basis. At that rate, Page said it was nearly impossible to make a great mobile experience.
The rest is pretty much history as Android is now the most popular mobile operating system in the world. Google now has more than 60 manufacturers and over 750 million devices have been activated to date. Users have downloaded more than 25 billion apps from Google Play.
With Pichai taking over Android and continuing his role with Chrome and Apps, at least some in the industry believe Android and Chrome OS may finally merge, shoring up rumors of such a move in recent time.