Washington: Indian-origin Sunder Pichai, an IIT-Kharagpur alumnus, has been named as the new head of Google's Android division, making him one of the most powerful executives at the Internet giant.
"Going forward, Sundar Pichai will lead Android, in addition to his existing work with Chrome and Apps," company CEO Larry Page has announced.
Page made the announcement on a blog, adding that Tamil Nadu-born Pichai has a talent for creating products that are technically excellent yet easy to use-and he loves a big bet.
"Take Chrome, for example. In 2008, people asked whether the world really needed another browser. Today Chrome has hundreds of millions of happy users and is growing fast thanks to its speed, simplicity and security," Page said.
40-year-old Pichai replaces Andy Rubin, the man behind the success of Google's Android division.
Rubin stepped down as the executive in charge of Google's Android operating system for smartphones and tablet computers, ending a seven-year stint.
"So while Andy's a really hard act to follow, I know Sundar will do a tremendous job doubling down on Android as we work to push the ecosystem forward," Page said praising him.
Pichai joined Google in 2004, where he led the product management and innovation efforts for a suite of Google's client software products, including Google Chrome and Chrome Operating System, as well as being largely responsible for Google Drive.
He also oversaw the development of different apps like Gmail and Google Maps.
Pichai studied metallurgical and materials engineering, and graduated from IIT Kharagpur in 1993, after which he did a Masters in engineering and materials science at Stanford University and got a Masters in business administration from the Wharton School of Business.
"Today we're living in a new computing environment. People are really excited about technology and spending a lot of money on devices. This is driving faster adoption than we have ever seen before," Page wrote on the blog.
"The Nexus programme-developed in conjunction with our partners Asus, HTC, LG and Samsung-has become a beacon of innovation for the industry, and services such as Google Now have the potential to really improve your life," he said.
"We're getting closer to a world where technology takes care of the hard work, discovery, organisation, communication, so that you can get on with what makes you happiest, living and loving. It's an exciting time to be at Google," Page said.
First Published: Friday, March 15, 2013, 15:33