Android executive Hugo Barra is leaving Google.
Barra, formerly a VP of Android product, will join Xiaomi, which is often called the “Apple of China.” Xiaomi phones run on Android. The company is called the Apple of China because it copies a lot of what Apple does. For instance, its keynote product launches are comically similar.
The reason for Barra’s departure, however, is what everyone is speculating about.
AllThingsD broke the news of Barra leaving. The publication also said the departure followed a relationship Barra had with a co-worker at Google — a co-worker whom Google founder Sergey Brin, who recently separated from his wife, is now dating.
Sources close to the situation told AllThingsD that Barra recently tendered his resignation, but that it came before a recent thorny personal situation related to the end of a romantic relationship he had with another Googler.
That Googler is now seeing the company’s co-founder Sergey Brin, but sources said his decision to leave the company is unrelated and was made before he was aware of the new relationship.
AllThingsD is known for scoops about personnel moves in the tech industry. It rarely dives into people’s personal lives. The fact that it’s phrasing what’s going on so awkwardly has many people thinking that there was some sort of love-triangle here.
Sergey Brin is married to Anne Wojcicki, but they recently separated, something that came to light yesterday around the same time as the Barra report. Both Brin and Google are investors in Wojcicki’s startup, 23andMe. And Anne
Wojcicki’s sister, Susan, meanwhile, is very senior executive at Google, making an already sticky situation even more sensitive.
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