Andy Rubin is accused of maintaining an “inappropriate relationship” with a Google employee at the time he was working there. A blow to his new business that was mainly based on him.
Andy Rubin promised to revolutionize smartphones. This design is now compromised. The American entrepreneur, known for having created Android, has left his new company, Essential. The cause of this premature departure, for the moment in the form of leave: an investigation of the American media The Information, which states that Andy Rubin would have had an “inappropriate relationship” with a Google employee, at the time when he worked in the American giant of new technologies. The exact nature of this relationship is not specified. Nevertheless, it would have resulted in the employee filing a complaint with the Google Human Resources Department. Andy Rubin left the company soon after this affair in 2014.
The creator of Android has been informed of the upcoming publication of The Information Monday. He would have immediately left his company for an indefinite period. “Any relationship Mr. Rubin had to Google was consensual. He has never been informed by Google that he has done wrong, because it is not the case, within the company or elsewhere, “commented the spokesman Andy Rubin.
A blow to the business
It is not certain that this case is sexual harassment. The employee was working in Google’s Android department under Andy Rubin. However, Google strictly controls any romantic relationship between two employees, especially when one of them is the superior of the other. They may have to change their service if it is deemed necessary by the management of the company. According to The Information, an investigation into the subject would have been conducted by Google in 2014. At the time, Andy Rubin had already left the Android division to conduct research in robotics of his company. He will definitively leave her in October 2014. “Rubin’s behavior was inappropriate and he displayed poor judgment,” concluded the people in charge of the internal investigation.
This case is a blow to Essential. The company’s first phone, unveiled in May, was a serious contender for the iPhone. Andy Rubin has around 40 employees in this adventure, some from Apple and Google. In June, he raised $ 300 million from investors such as Google, HP and Foxconn, Apple’s major subcontractor. The company had even interested the Japanese Softbank, which was ready to invest 100 million dollars. The transaction was eventually canceled due to another contract linking Apple to the company.
Bad sales of the “Phone”
The “Phone”, as it is called by Essential, wants to compete with the big names of the sector and to make a difference. It has features typical of a high-end smartphone. It is also equipped with a magnetic port to accommodate additional accessories, such as this small 360-degree camera. It works thanks to Android. Andy Rubin has also created an operating system dedicated to connected objects. A connected speaker, called “Home”, had to follow the sale of the “Phone”. She still has no official release date.
After a big launch, things were quickly complicated for Essential. The phone has received mixed reviews from the trade press. He also suffered a big delay in delivery. The device, which was to be sold in June, was finally delivered to its first owners in August. Andy Rubin had made the choice to sell his smartphone first on the Internet. He finally signed a distribution agreement with telecom operator Sprint and other e-commerce platforms. The price of the device has fallen sharply since its launch, from $ 699 to $ 499, potentially suggesting poor sales. A mobile analytics company, BayStreet Research, said Essential sold only 5,000 smartphones in September through its partnership with Sprint. The reputation of Andy Rubin has not yet made the success of his company. From now on, she could even cause him difficulties.