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Google's new reorganization will combine its hardware and Android teams into one division

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Less than a month before the 2024 edition of the Google I/O developer conference is held on May 14, the company is making some major changes to its organization. That includes merging its hardware and Android teams into a new division.

In a blog post, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced that the new division will be called Platforms and Devices. It will have Google's Pixel hardware teams, along with its Android, Chrome, Photos, and Google One teams, under one umbrella. Also, Google Research teams that have worked on "computational photography and on-device intelligence" will now be a part of the new Platforms and Devices team.

Rick Osterloh, who previously was the head of Google's devices and service team, will now be the head of the new Platforms and Devices division. At first glance, this organizational change is similar to what Microsoft has now, with one person leading both its Windows and Surface teams.

The blog post also stated that Hiroshi Lockheimer, the long-time leader of the Android and Chrome teams, "will advise on the transition even as he starts work on some new projects across Alphabet."

Google is also making some changes in an attempt to boost its AI efforts. The blog post stated that the teams at Google Research that work on new AI models will now merge with similar teams in the Google DeepMind division. The blog stated:

All of this work will now sit in Google DeepMind and scale our capacity to deliver capable AI for our users, partners and customers. This will simplify development by concentrating compute-intensive model building in one place and establishing single access points for PAs looking to take these models and build generative AI applications.

Google will also transfer the Responsible AI teams in Google Research to Google DeepMindm, and its other responsibility teams will be switched to Google's Trust and Safety division. It will be interesting to see how these organizational shifts work out in the coming months and years.

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