The man behind the Google Phone is gadget guru Andy Rubin, a robotics fanatic whose love of cutting-edge toys puts him at odds with the Google anti-conspicuous-consumption ethos. A Times profile finds Rubin at home in a palace of technology, with a retinal scanner at the door and a robotic arm that rings the doorbell. Ironically, Google itself isn't making any such hardware for phones, just software other companies will use.
Before designing the much-anticipated Google Phone, Rubin, 44, developed the first smartphone, the commercially unsuccessful 2002 Sidekick. Rubin is now 'director of platforms' for Google; the phone that will take the next step in morphing the cellphone into a mobile computer lies in his hands. 'I want to find something that delights people so they use it,' Rubin says.