Python, Flutter teams latest on the Google chopping block

Never mind the record revenues, costs must be cut

Updated Google's latest round of layoffs have hit engineers working on its Flutter and Python teams.

Despite Alphabet last week reporting a 57 percent year-on-year jump in net profit to $23.66 billion for calendar Q1, more roles are being expunged as the mega-corp cracks down on costs.

The Python team is reportedly affected and an undisclosed number of Flutter and Dart engineers have been let go.

A Reddit account under the name of Kevin Moore, a Google Product Manager for Flutter and Dart, posted: "The layoffs were decided AT LEAST a couple of layers above our team and affected a LOT of teams. (I think I can say that.)

"Lots of good folks got bad news and lots of great projects lost people. Flutter and Dart were not affected any more or less [than] others. It was a tough day... tough week."

Does this mean that Flutter will be taking a tentative step toward the "Killed by Google" graveyard? Jamboard could always use the company.

Flutter is an open source Dart-based UI toolkit designed to allow developers to create apps across multiple platforms, both mobile (Android and iOS) and desktop (Linux, macOS, and Windows.) It was making progress at the beginning of 2023 but now appears to have fallen victim to relentless cost-cutting at Google.

As for the Python team, the current positions have reportedly been "reduced" in favor of a new team based in Munich.

The Register contacted Google to verify the number of reductions, and to ask whether the cloud titan was still committed to the Flutter platform. We have yet to receive a response.

Moore attempted to remain optimistic, noting that it was a sad situation, and "crazy to be seeing demos and new things working and discussions about new customers the same day we lost colleagues and friends."

He said: "You're nervous. I get it. We get it. You're betting on Flutter and Dart. So am I. So is Google."

To which one wag responded: "We certainly are betting on Flutter... to be killed within a few years."

The cost cutting at Google began in January last year when 12,000 people or six percent of the workforce were made redundant. This was by far the most significant number of job losses in Google's history, and an acknowledgment that the numbers of people recruited during the pandemic was no longer sustainable given the downturn in business.

That slowdown in business has now passed - clearly - but Google is looking to free up resources to spend more on priorities, including AI.

So far this year, Google has waved goodbye to staff in the core engineering group, Devices and Services, the Google Assistant biz, YouTube and more recently in finance and real estate. ®

Updated to add

A Google spokesperson has been in touch to spin this as a positive thing:

As we’ve said, we’re responsibly investing in our company's biggest priorities and the significant opportunities ahead. To best position us for these opportunities, throughout the second half of 2023 and into 2024, a number of our teams made changes to become more efficient and work better, remove layers and align their resources to their biggest product priorities.

Through this, we’re simplifying our structures to give employees more opportunity to work on our most innovative and important advances and our biggest company priorities, while reducing bureaucracy and layers.

Meanwhile, CNBC says about 200 techies from Google's core development teams – the people who maintain internal tooling and whatnot, like Python – have been cut, with some roles shifting to Mexico and India.

More about


Send us news

Other stories you might like