Google CEO Eric Schmidt Resigns From Apple Board

ericEric Schmidt, chief executive officer of Google (s GOOG), has resigned from the board of Apple (s APPL), the company said in a statement.

“Eric has been an excellent Board member for Apple, investing his valuable time, talent, passion and wisdom to help make Apple successful,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “Unfortunately, as Google enters more of Apple’s core businesses, with Android and now Chrome OS, Eric’s effectiveness as an Apple Board member will be significantly diminished, since he will have to recuse himself from even larger portions of our meetings due to potential conflicts of interest. Therefore, we have mutually decided that now is the right time for Eric to resign his position on Apple’s Board.”

The way I see it, he got shown the door by Jobs. Back in May, Schmidt said he had no plans to resign from Apple’s board. (Take our poll below the fold)

[polldaddy poll=1835699] Over the last few days, as the Google Voice apps fiasco has taken on a life of its own, I have been busy pointing out that this battle was between Apple and Google.

I believe that AT&T has become a piñata in the high-stakes war being waged by Apple and Google. Why do we believe that these two companies are not in competition with each other? Is it because Eric Schmidt sits on the Apple board? This battle between Google and Apple is going to get very ugly — as it should. Both companies have pinned their futures on smartphones.

Jobs’ statement and Schmidt’s exit from the board all but confirms it. The matter might have come to a head over the FCC’s investigation into the Google Voice Apps fiasco. I am not ready to rule out that “given Google’s increasing presence in Washington as a lobbying superpower, one can’t rule out Google’s silent hand in this investigation.”

The way I see it, Apple should take these hostilities one step further: Kick out Google Maps from the core of its service and replace it with Yahoo (s yhoo) Maps. And as for search, there is this thing called Bing… (Hat tip, The Wall Street Journal.)

Image courtesy of Google.