Android Creator Andy Rubin Takes Leave From Essential After Report of ‘Inappropriate Relationship’

Move follows report that Andy Rubin left Google shortly after internal investigation in 2014

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Android creator Andy Rubin announced Monday he was taking a one-month leave of absence as CEO of the smartphone company Essential for “personal reasons.”

The decision was made public shortly after The Information reported that Rubin was investigated by Google for an “inappropriate relationship with a subordinate” during his time at the tech giant.

Google policy doesn’t allow romantic relationships between managers and subordinates, and its internal investigation found Rubin’s “behavior was improper and showed bad judgement.,” according to The Information.

The site further reported that an employee working on the Android team complained to Google’s human resources department about her relationship with Rubin; the specifics on the complaint and her relationship with Rubin weren’t mentioned. Rubin left Google in 2014 shortly after the investigation.

“Any relationship that Mr. Rubin had while at Google was consensual,” Mike Sitrick, a representative for Rubin, told TheWrap. “Mr. Rubin was never told by Google that he engaged in any misconduct while at Google and he did not, either while at Google or since.”

Essential told TheVerge Rubin had asked for his leave earlier in the month and that Niccolo de Masi, Essential’s president, had filled the void.

“At our last regularly scheduled board meeting earlier in November, Andy asked for a leave of absence to deal with personal matters,” the company said in its statement. “The board agreed and our president, Niccolo de Masi, will continue to run day-to-day operations at Essential.”

Rubin joined Google in 2005 after selling Android for an undisclosed sum. As SVP of Mobile and Digital Content, Rubin oversaw the further development of Android under the Google umbrella.