Tech giant Google has announced employee layoffs across multiple corporate divisions, accompanied by a strategic shift in its organizational model.
The company is transitioning to a functional structure, consolidating responsibilities such as hardware engineering across Pixel, Nest, and Fitbit under a unified team and a leader who will oversee the aspect of products across Google’s hardware portfolio. As part of this transformation, Fitbit co-founders James Park and Eric Friedman, along with other Fitbit leaders, will be leaving Google as part of this reorganization. The decision to lay off staff has impacted over 1,000 employees across the organization.
“While we are making changes to our 1P(First-Party) Augmented Reality (AR)hardware team, Google continues to be deeply committed to other AR initiatives, such as AR experiences in our products, and product partnerships,” Google said in a statement, Google expressed.
Google has also initiated layoffs in its ad sales division, affecting hundreds of employees. The restructuring aims to better support small and medium businesses, with impacted employees having the opportunity to apply for open roles within the company. Other affected areas include Devices & Services, Google Assistant, and knowledge and information product teams. The layoffs have left many questioning the rationale behind such substantial workforce reductions at a highly profitable company.
Google’s Chief Business Officer, Philipp Schindler, has emphasized the necessity of the layoffs to align with the company’s business priorities.
“Sadly though, we will have to say goodbye to many highly talented and amazing sales colleagues,” he added, “while I’m confident we’re doing the right thing for our customers, partners, and ultimately for our business, this will be very hard for many, especially across our LCS (Large Customer Sales) teams.”
This downsizing suggests Google is no longer working on its own augmented Reality (AR) hardware and is fully committed to the Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) – partnership model, abandoning internal AR hardware development. Simultaneously, Google is restructuring the Google Assistant team to enhance its AI capabilities and broaden its scope beyond voice interactions.
The corporate layoffs are set to begin on March 10th and may continue until October.