CUPERTINO, California—August 3, 2009—Apple today announced that Eric Schmidt, the CEO of Google, is resigning from Apple’s Board of Directors, a position he has held since August 2006.
“Eric has been an excellent Board member for Apple, investing his valuable time, talent, passion and wisdom to help make Apple successful,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “Unfortunately, as Google enters more of Apple’s core businesses, with Android and now Chrome OS, Eric’s effectiveness as an Apple Board member will be significantly diminished, since he will have to recuse himself from even larger portions of our meetings due to potential conflicts of interest. Therefore, we have mutually decided that now is the right time for Eric to resign his position on Apple’s Board.”
While Google has been careful not to step on too many of Apple’s toes as they expanded their business the launch of Android set the wheels in motion for Eric Schmidt step down. The recent release of Chrome OS has not helped worries within Apple users that Google will turn into the next Microsoft.
The final nail in the coffin appears to be the FTC letters to AT&T, Apple & Google to please explain why Google Voice App was denied from the Apple App Store. Many within the industry thought that with the increasing number of Apple & Google products competitng when Eric Schmidt would have to leave the board. So maybe the idea of more Google products such as a Google Phone might be closer now that they dont have to play friendly with Apple?
What it does look like that this will mean a 3way fight between MSN/Yahoo VS Apple VS Google to win over the consumers. But will many of the default settings on the iPhone such as having Google Search or Google Maps change because of this move? But do Apple set the default search to Bing or stay with Google to keep their users happy?
What is most interesting is that it appears that Apple is the first to announce the move in a PR release on their website, but Google has not made any public announcement at the time this article was written within the Google Press Center.