Google poaches 14-year Mac veteran from Apple to bring Fuchsia to market

By Abner Li

We learned in 2016 that Google was working on an entirely new operating system called Fuchsia. Development continues with new features and testing on a variety of form factors spotted regularly. Google has since hired 14-year Apple engineer Bill Stevenson to work on its upcoming OS, and help bring it to market.

Stevenson started at Apple in 2004 as a Product Release Engineer for OS X. In this role, he “triaged and diagnosed” application and framework issues, while also working with third-party developers.

Remaining in the OS X organization, he became a Senior Engineering Program Manager four years later. New responsibilities included serving as PM and Technical Lead for AirPlay, Find My Mac, iCloud for Mac, and AirDrop from 10.6 Snow Leopard to 10.9 Mavericks. Most of these features are notably backed by cloud services.

Since 2012, Stevenson has been a Senior Manager for Mac/Windows Program Management. He has had a hand in every major release from Lion right up to Mojave last year; leading teams responsible for build, release, and technical program management.

  • Coordinated with Software Engineering, Hardware, Developer Tools, Marketing, User Experience, Legal, Operations, and QA teams to support needs of major operating system releases, software updates, security updates, and new hardware factory bring-up
  • Provided regular status reporting on active releases, projects, and initiatives to executive management

It’s not surprising why Google would want someone with that background and experience to bring up Fuchsia. In a LinkedIn post shared yesterday, Stevenson specifically notes “joining Google to help bring a new operating system called Fuchsia to market.”

His experience also extends to working with hardware groups, as well as third-party developers, which will be important for building an app ecosystem. This outside hire comes as many on the Fuchsia team are Google employees that previously worked on Android.

A report from July of 2018 revealed that Google plans to first release a smart speaker running Fuchsia within three years. We’ve spotted in recent months devices that match this description. According to Bloomberg, phones and laptops will follow two years later with plans to replace Android in the long run.

Stevenson is joining Google this February with his role not yet publicly specified.

More about Fuchsia:

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