Google Glass unit continues to stir as business operations head Chris O’Neill likely planning departure

Earlier this year 9to5Google wrote that several notable engineers on the Google Glass project had rotated to work elsewhere in Google, but today we have word of yet another shakeup—this time suggesting that some even bigger changes are in the making. Sources familiar with the situation have informed us that Chris O’Neill, the former Managing Director of Google Canada and current head of Google Glass business operations, is likely planning to make a move away from the smartglass unit…

O’Neill joined the Glass team in May of 2014, and his position at the Mountain View company is officially Global Business Operations at Google[x] as per his LinkedIn profile. It’s definitely possible he will stay as such through this transition considering that Google Glass is no longer part of the company’s experimental project division—so a move away from the Glass team may very well be a natural one for O’Neill.


Tony Fadell took over the Google Glass project earlier this year when it was graduated out of Google[x] and into its own division. This change of personnel is likely part of a larger restructuring on the part of Fadell to make the unit more his own, and we’ve heard that even more restructuring should be expected in the coming months. Several Google Glass engineer positions appeared on LinkedIn earlier this month, including one for a Lead Engineer of Enterprise.

According to reports from earlier this year, Google plans to push a “final version” of Google Glass to market before the end of 2015—but only when “Ms. Ross and Mr. Fadell think it is ready.” Today’s news should definitely not be taken in a negative light considering Fadell’s reputation—and recent comments from Google’s Eric Schmidt reassure us that the project isn’t on the way out. “It is a big and very fundamental platform for Google,” he said.

We’ve reached out to Google for comment, and we’ll update this post if we hear back.