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Arthur Levinson Resigns From Google's Board of Directors

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Google today announced that former Genentech CEO Arthur Levinson has stepped down from the company's Board of Directors, effective immediately, after five years in the position. Levinson has also served as a member of Apple's Board of Directors since 2000.
Google CEO and Chairman Eric Schmidt described Levinson as a good friend and valued colleague. "Art has been a key part of Google's success these past five years, offering unvarnished advice and vital counsel on every big issue and opportunity Google has faced," Schmidt said. "Though he leaves as a member of our Board, Art will always have a special place at Google."

"Working with Eric, Larry, Sergey and the whole Google team has been a remarkable experience for me. I greatly admire what they've built and have no doubt that Google has a terrific future," said Levinson.
Levinson's positions on the Apple's and Google's boards gained publicity after the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) began investigating corporate ties between the two companies as they began to compete in an increasing number of areas while continuing to share close ties.

Google CEO Eric Schmidt had been a member of Apple's Board of Directors, but resigned in early August due to limitations on his effectiveness as he was forced to recuse himself from Board discussions related to the increasing number of areas of competition. The SEC commended the two companies for recognizing Schmidt's conflict of interest, but indicated that it would continue to investigate ties between the two companies.

Article Link: Arthur Levinson Resigns From Google's Board of Directors
 

overanalyzer

macrumors 6502a
Sep 7, 2007
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Boston, MA USA
So I guess they're just splitting up their shared board members. While I understand and appreciate the need to prevent collusion between companies and market monopolization, I also can't help but wonder what technological developments this distancing of Apple and Google will impede or prevent.
 
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QCassidy352

macrumors G4
Mar 20, 2003
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Things could get ugly between Apple and Google over the next few years.

"ugly?" How so? They will increasingly compete in the same markets, but I'm not sure how you get to "ugly." To my mind, "ugly" is something like the palm-apple relationship, which I don't see happening between apple and google. I think they'll be fighting for marketshare but in a way that's good for consumers.
 
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BornAgainMac

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Feb 4, 2004
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Ugly would be when more Google Apps get rejected. Google stops developing for the Mac and iPhone. Google maps and You Tube gets pulled from the iPhone and replaced by other apps from Apple. Yahoo and Bing search instead of Google search. Comments from Steve Jobs on how Google copies Apple during future keynotes. Google comments about how people should be using Chrome OS instead of Mac OS because they won't have to deal with patches and use cheaper hardware. Ugly stuff like that.
 
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thejadedmonkey

macrumors G3
May 28, 2005
8,318
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Pennsylvania
I'm very impressed with how Google has managed to turn itself from a search/ad company into a software company much like Microsoft... very slick transition, too!
 
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*LTD*

macrumors G4
Feb 5, 2009
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So I guess they're just splitting up their shared board members. While I understand and appreciate the need to prevent collusion between companies and market monopolization, I also can't help but wonder what technological developments this distancing of Apple and Google will impede or prevent.

Apple will be coming up with more of their own solutions. Their recent interest in mapping might be a sign of this.
 
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lazyrighteye

macrumors 68020
Jan 16, 2002
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Denver, CO
I can't help but think a Google/Apple battle will replace the old MS/Apple battle. While MS & Apple have battled OSes, Google has quietly(?) been laying some serious groundwork that users, including Apple, have grown dangerously dependent upon. Google appears to be making the OS almost moot. Who cares about OS flavor when 90% of users can get the tools they need onlie?

It would seem Apple needs Google more than Google needs Apple.

This could get messy.
 
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jaw04005

macrumors 601
Aug 19, 2003
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AR
I doubt much will change with either company. Eric Schmidt was at the last Apple keynote, despite having resigned from the board weeks earlier. It wouldn’t surprise me if both Levinson and Schmidt remain informal advisers to both boards when needed.

The SEC acts like the majority of business actually goes on in formal, board meeting settings. Levinson and Schmidt’s resignations mean nothing in the short-term, likely nothing in the long-term either. Apple’s board is essentially a bunch of figureheads anyway. I think we all know who runs the show there.
 
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azentropy

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Jul 19, 2002
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I think people are reading in to it more than they need to. It wasn't like anyone was kicked off either board or there are pending lawsuits.

Apple and Google still have a very strong business relationship, which is what got them in trouble in the first place. Sure they are going to disagree on things and there are going to be bumps in the road, but as long as it is mutually advantageous for them to work together they will.

Of course Apple and Google both have to still look at alternatives to each other, again there would be a bigger problem if they didn't.

I wouldn't be surprised to see if some of Apple's technology currently not available on any Linux Distro be available for ChromeOS at some point (ie. iTunes, Quicktime, MobleMe and maybe even Safari).
 
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iOrlando

macrumors 68000
Jul 20, 2008
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Things could get ugly between Apple and Google over the next few years.

what makes you think that?

It was pretty remarkably that apple and google shared two board members to begin with (one of which was the CEO). The ramifications were pretty great. Google and Apple were told they had to do these moves by the FTC. They dont come out and say that but its obvious. I doubt they would have done these moves if it wasn't for government pressure.

Schidmt was at apple's last event and I don't see why he wouldn't be at future events.

Think of it as college roommates moving away from each after college. They will of course grow apart, not know each others every move and action, but to now label them as enemies and their relationship as ugly is a bit overdramatic.
 
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Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
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Things could get ugly between Apple and Google over the next few years.
History teaches us that any large companies in overlapping markets will have areas of competition and areas of potential cooperation.
Apple <-> Google: usually friendly, occasionally not

Apple <-> Adobe: usually friendly, occasionally not

Apple <-> AT&T: usually friendly, occasionally not

Apple <-> Intel: usually friendly, occasionally not

Apple <-> Microsoft: occasionally friendly, usually not

Apple <-> Palm: hmmm...​
 
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eastcoastsurfer

macrumors 6502a
Feb 15, 2007
600
27
I wouldn't be surprised to see if some of Apple's technology currently not available on any Linux Distro be available for ChromeOS at some point (ie. iTunes, Quicktime, MobleMe and maybe even Safari).

I think you may be right, because anything that brings MSs market share down is a win for both companies, especially in the enterprise space. Think, instead of fighting over the same small pie, lets grow the pie and both benefit.
 
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xIGmanIx

macrumors 6502a
Dec 21, 2008
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i bet this guy got a decent check out the door. Because i think the last thing that either companies wanted was big brother in their kitchen. I didn't think i read anything that made it sound like his stepping down was performance based, so my two cents is this guy stepped on his sword to stop the investigation. i would be interested to see if this guy is back at some point
 
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albusseverus

macrumors 6502a
Nov 28, 2007
742
152
Job done. Co-operation between Apple and Google successfully busted up. Micosoft is safe for a couple more years.

Apple and Google need to buy a few more politicians. It's only $10,000 each and they'll be able to avoid this kind of witch hunt in future.

I don't believe the facts support tension between Apple and Google. Maybe they're making some kind of show to avoid these kind of questions in future, but co-operation seems to be going on as well as can be expected for companies with similar products.

Apple would be wise to position Google as the choice for people that just want stuff that appears to work and themselves as a product that works well, with little fuss. Google can move into Microsoft's space with beta software and products that come and go for a year at a time. The longevity of Office aside, that's pretty much what Microsoft does now anyway.

Anyone who seriously thinks an OS can run in a browser… is probably buying Microsoft at the moment anyway.
 
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MattInOz

macrumors 68030
Jan 19, 2006
2,760
0
Sydney
So I guess they're just splitting up their shared board members. While I understand and appreciate the need to prevent collusion between companies and market monopolization, I also can't help but wonder what technological developments this distancing of Apple and Google will impede or prevent.

Not sure it will prevent any...

It issue seems to be with mutual board members an the lack of transparency, anything could be said within a board meeting, lots of detail that gives a real advantage.

Most the real technology sharing seems to happening by way of open source projects already. That gives a level of transparency to those efforts. It may just mean mutual project become open sourced sooner in there life than previously.
 
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MattInOz

macrumors 68030
Jan 19, 2006
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0
Sydney
Anyone who seriously thinks an OS can run in a browser… is probably buying Microsoft at the moment anyway.

Have a look at google wave....
I don't think the OS (i.e. backend storage, hardware interaction,...) of ChromeOS is going to run in the browser. It's probably going to run in the wave,... which is just a server that could be running well below or even besides userland. Only the "Finder"/"Explorer" part of chrome will run in the browser.
 
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