Eric Schmidt has resigned from the board of directors at Apple.
The Google chief executive, who had been on the board since August 2006, is to resign his position with immediate effect.
Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple, said: “Eric has been an excellent board member for Apple, investing his valuable time, talent, passion and wisdom to help make Apple successful.
“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.”
The Guardian's Charles Arthur believed that the departure has been prompted by growing conflicts between the two companies' product portfolios of mobile phone and computing operating systems, and web browsers; and by questions about whether the head of one of the most powerful companies in the world should have such close association with a company many might see as a potential rival.
The Associated Press claimed that relationships between the two companies have not always been smooth. On Friday 31st July, the Federal Communications Commission sent letters to Apple and Google, as well as AT&T, Apple iPhone's partner in the United States, to seek more information on Apple's rejection of Google Voice's application for the iPhone.