A new report from CNBC this evening claims that the Apple executive responsible for the company’s iCloud infrastructure has left the company. Eric Billingsley was Apple’s director of internet services operations, overseeing much of the iCloud backend…
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The report says Patrick Gates will take over Billingsley’s position. Gates was already in charge of infrastructure for services like Siri, but his responsibilities will now expand in lieu of Billingsley.
Billingsley came to Apple relatively recently, joining in 2013 after time at eBay and Google.
According to CNBC’s source, data infrastructure has been “a bit of a problem child” at Apple and Gates is largely seen as the company’s way of “righting the ship” after those struggles.
Currently, Apple relies heavily on the likes of Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure for its backend, but today’s report suggests that Billingsley’s departure could hint at Apple looking to move on from those services, instead focusing on its own “Project McQueen” backend.
Project McQueen was first reported last year as Apple works to create its own data backend to reduce reliance on Amazon and Microsoft. McQueen, however, is only the start of Apple’s infrastructure efforts. A separate report last year said Apple has a total of six infrastructure projects in the works.
In his time at Apple, Billingsley reported to engineering vice president Patrick Gautier, who reported to senior vice president Eddy Cue.
Apple has not commented on the departure of Billingsley and it’s unclear if it was amicable or not.