Former Android boss leaving Google to form start-up incubator

31 Oct 2014

Andy Rubin, the former head and co-founder of Android. Image via Joi Ito/Flickr

The former head and co-founder of Android, Andy Rubin, has decided to take himself out of Google to focus his efforts on creating a start-up incubator specifically for hardware entrepreneurs.

Rubin was also most recently head of Google’s advanced nascent robotics division, having switched his focus to the technology only last year from the world’s most-used phone operating system.

Despite the boon of having him as one of the company’s leaders in robotics, Google has said it remains committed to that particular field with James Kuffner, a research scientist and robotics developer at Google, filling Rubin’s place.

In a statement, Google CEO Larry Page wished Rubin well in his future endeavours, and as Rubin emphasised in an email to The Wall Street Journal, the decision to leave was not due to a falling out.

“Larry enabled the robotic effort to run exactly the way I wanted it to, and we made great progress in our first year,” said Rubin in his email, before establishing he “didn’t really have any issues with independence”.

During his brief time as head of the company’s robotics division, Rubin oversaw the acquisition of some of the most innovative companies in that field, particularly Boston Dynamics, which is most well-known for the various prototypes of its robot on four legs, including the WildCat and Big Dog.

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic