Hugo Barra

Barra ends his run directly working with Android after 5 years at the company

Update: Barra took to his Google+ page this evening to confirm that he is indeed leaving Google to take on a new role as VP of Xiaomi Global. He indicates that he will be helping the company expand its phones beyond China to the rest of the world, and is excited to continue working with Android.

Original Story: Shortly after he appeared in front of press to unveil the latest Nexus 7 tablet for Google, Android VP of Product Hugo Barra has reportedly resigned from his position at the company. AllThingsD reports that Barra, who had been an increasingly familiar face around Google events, is planning a move over to prominent Chinese smart phone maker Xiaomi in an interesting change of direction.

Up-and-coming Xiaomi currently builds phones that run Android with heavy modification as a holistic approach of hardware and software, and has been making waves in the Chinese phone market in the past couple of years. Barra's departure itself seems very sudden and surprising, but the reported move to Xiaomi catches us even more off guard.

Barra is truly one of the biggest influencers in Android today, and his move to a third-party Android manufacturer could change the mobile market notably.

Source: AllThingsD; +Hugo Barra (Google+)


Reader comments

Android VP of Product Hugo Barra to leave Google for Chinese manufacturer Xiaomi [updated]


But as its noted in the article, Hugo's resignation was before anything was known of those "issues". Hard to pin him leaving on one thing when no details are known.

Segi left his wife and is dipping his pen in the company ink, that doesn't sound good. Sounds like a Human Resources Nightmare waiting to happen. All the women in the world for a young smart billionaire and he is going to mess with an employee of his company.

How bad does a women have to burn you that it would make you move to china? You couldn't pay me to move to china and their environmental nightmare going on there.

I wonder if she acquired the marketing manager position before or after dating Hugo. I am a firm believer in policies not allowing romantic relationships among your employees. She is definitely a cutie though.

The assumption train had left the station Andrew, now cue all the "Google is doomed" neigh sayers! From this point on people are gonna think (assume) a love triangle made him leave. I just don't understand why AllthingsD would even put that in their article in the first place, when they themselves don't have any hard evidence of the matter.

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It is definitely personal love issues here, just imagine Sergey Brin stealing his GF and things get complicated at workplace. Obviously, they wont mention this reason in Press Release.

OH MAN!!!! These googler sluts are just banging away!! Free food, free massage, bikes at work, AND the girls are going down to pound town! Ive gotta get in there man!!!

I'll tell you why not. Now the Chinese government has Android. There's a reason Google doesn't have the best relationship with China.

Lol that's not the reason, Google spies/violates terms of other countries when they enter the market. That's why they are on bitter terms.

So once he gets there, he gets all tortured and shit and gives the magic Android source to China? I don't get it.

Please explain how that was racist. I don't know what his race is nor do I care. Thanks Android Central for the censorship. Bunch of pussies.

You said immigrants don't care about the US... That's a somewhat racist remark

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Dammit, this comments section needs to be fixed. I replied to a different comment, that comment was removed, and now it looks like I replied to a completely different comment.

Calm down, you don't educate them. MIT is a private school so none of your tax payer dollars, most likely, paid for his education. Xiaomi is part owned by Qualcomm, they have amazing phones. Do a little research before you criticize. Just the other day they sold out 50,000 units of their newest low/mid-range phone in just 3 minutes. The Xiaomi MI2S is also a solid phone. Better than the Nexus 4 for about the same price, before that $100 price drop of course.

People get grants from taxpayer dollars. So yes, I'm sure we all paid for it. Regardless, this isn't good. Use your brain.

With their latest phone announcement I knew this company was going to make a dent, but this, just wow!!!

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so he should leave because of his pause forgetting all his awesome presentation???
thats the stupid thing ever.

Really liked him. What a shame. Why would anyone leave one of the biggest and innovative companies in the world for a Chinese "nothing?"

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They're not quite a Chinese nothing. They're big in China and have one of the biggest ROM communities around the world. Ever heard of MIUI? That's them.

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Compared to Google, they're a nothing company. Ask anyone on the street what Google is, then ask anyone who this company is.

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But that doesn't mean that it isn't a good move in Hugo's eyes or that they're not a worth-while company. There are many companies around the world that your average person on the street has never heard of, that doesn't mean they aren't deserving of good talent.

I do agree with that. However, it just seems like an odd move on his part, but I suppose it's what he wanted to do. It's obvious he knows what's he doing so I guess it will all work out well for him in the end.

LOL Random much? So he's leaving a well known company for another unknown Chinese one that's only been around for a few years?

Mr. Worley is going to take a time-out for a few days, folks.

Thanks to everyone else who helps keep these comments (relatively) pleasant.

OK I will go with it

Good. The guy did do quite a few great things. He really got the ball rolling with Google's product lineup.

It was time to move on. The N4, IMHO was not an evolution but a bit of a step back. Sure some of the specs were updated but the storage not moving forward, LTE getting dropped, losing carriers, cameras that do not improve much, all these were backwards.

It really is kinda time for Google to be like Apple in one regard. Here is our Nexus, this is what we want. We are gonna market the hell out of it. Are you in Verizon? OK we control the updates, you still in?

If they say yes, no problem
If they say no, you announce that they wouldn't come to terms and favor the other carriers. In a whole lot of things. Take the power away from the carrier with the Nexus

But I digress

The N5 is in the pipeline so this is still Hugo's, but maybe we will see some forward progress with the N6

I am not knocking the Tablets, he did great there.

I wonder if he had much to do with the supply chain? I am sure he had a hand in it, but how much?

The Nexus 4 was LG's creation not Hugo's.
And I love mine and it has LTE.
It's a flagship phone for $350
No Nexus has had micro sd card slot since the very first Nexus and that one had I think 1GB of onboard storage? so it needed to microsd card. so to expect a Nexus to have sdcard slot is just silly.

You are wrong right off the bat. LG put the phone together from the specs and parts Google wanted. That is why it isn't the LG nexus, but Google nexus

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No one mentioned a sd card slot but you. I just said the storage is pitiful. Lte, unless you are in Canada, it wasn't designed for you to have so your point is moot. Lte has to be standard for it to sell well. Just because consumers want it.

I am not sure what your argument is, but you apparently didn't read my post at all

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They are dropping like flies over at Google. I believe that makes 4 top management people have left on their own, that just isn't right. They have all left in what the last 6 months. They just can not agree on how this OS is going, they can not make a phone if it killed them. The Nexus 4 was a real good piece of hardware and then they put 8gb of int memory in it. So many people screamed about this storage issue so they really bumped it up to a whopping 16gb. The only thing they are trying to do now is sell you Movies and other bull shit. That phone maybe very affordable but let's think about it, no storage and it was an accident that LTE is reachable on that phone. How the hell do you make a new device in 2013 without ample storage and no LTE??? I think their entire movement is just wrong. The new iPhone 5S has a new version with 128gb of int storage, why the hell can't Android make a device with that kind of int storage?? Maybe with some new blood their direction might change from greed to making their dedicated customers happy. Doubt it.

The 32gb was never actually available, though. But I definitely agree. Google always makes little mistakes with the Nexus line that drive away people who would buy the phone if it weren't for those mistakes. I love the Nexus phones, but I'm to the point where I absolutely need 64gb of on board/expandable storage and a Nexus hasn't been able to do that for me yet.

I mean...I would pay the money for it. This is how I'm really hoping to see the next Nexus lineup.
16gb - $299
32gb - $350
64gb - $400/$425/$450 (I would pay any of those prices)

I doubt that will happen, though. 128gb of storage would be great, but I don't see that for Android until next year with maybe HTC. They seem to be the only manufacturer other than Apple who gives a damn about on board storage.

It's such a shame because pure Android is my preferred flavor. I guess I'll be sticking with my HTC One running a Google Edition 4.3 rom for a while...which is fine with me...this phone is phenomenal.

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Sounds relatively reasonable give or take $50.

I really doubt that you will see 128GB next year. Just a guess but if we are not throwing 32 and 64 now, it is too big a jump

Big $$$$. No other reason.
Another reason might be, he is another victim of Sundar Pichai's politics. Remember the 1st victim, Android creator Andy Rubin.

It is purely personal, Sergey Brin was boning Hugo's GF, it would have gotten very complicated there.

Let's see if this turns into Google finding a way to take some of the power away from Samsung

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I think he's making the point that if another manufacturer, such as Xiaomi, begins to gain market share that Samsung would be less powerful because of it.

He'll quickly grow weary of the cancer-inducing smog and unrelenting diarrhea. It's only a matter of time before he turtle-walks his was back to another company in the land of toilet seat covers, the U.S. of A.

Damn it i loved watching Google I/O's because of this man, he was just so chill and informative and seemed to love what he was doing.

Best of luck to him.

if thats really what happened and thats her,,,thats kind of crazy. i met her while walking near union square in NYC lol. she had google glass on and let me try it out...
i think this will be a good time for Mathias Duarte to step into the spotlight.

Just a phone by an "American" company that is completely manufactured and assembled in China? People need to get over this.

Motorola is making one phone in America. Nokia used to make phones in Finland. LG and Samsung make phones in Korea. Many manufacturers use plants in eastern Europe and even Brazil. At some point or another, most of the components are being assembled or sourced from China or Taiwan.

Why do you care where the phone comes from? I sure don't. Just provide a great device that does what I want it to do, and let me buy it simply.

Xiaomi is doing big things.
Looks like they have quite the board too, all ex Microsoft, apple now Google employees

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My only concern would be how this would effect Android. At least we did not lose Matias.... That would be even worse.

HTC ONE ~ Android Central App

No matter why he had to leave, going to China is a great move. XM's phones are well built and sell well in Asia, eastern Europe etc. With an experienced product manager, they may be making a big splash in US as well. My wife's cousin was heavily involved with Zinga and his phone was XM which he only had positive things to say about.

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I hope to God that Xiaomi brings their phones to their phone to the US, and if they do Sprint wont jump on the bandwagon so I dont even know why I am getting happy