HTC CEO Peter Chou (4) 

Peter Chou cofounded HTC in 1997. He took the helm of the company in 2004. He turned it into the rising star of the nascent smartphone industry. And he oversaw its slow death after 2011. Now he is officially out at HTC.

Following a rumor that surfaced yesterday in Chinese-language media, HTC officially confirmed that Peter Chou has left all positions at the company last year.

Chou stepped down as CEO in March 2015, ceding the role to HTC chairwoman – and cofounder – Cher Wang. Chou was supposed to stay with the company as “head of the HTC Future Development Lab,” in charge with the exploration of new technologies, including virtual reality.

In September 2015, Peter Chou was appointed chairman of Digital Domain, a US-based visual effects company known for its work on blockbusters like Iron Man, Transformers, and Titanic. At the time, it was speculated that the connection would help HTC develop content for its fledgling Vive virtual reality platform. As it turns out, HTC and Chou had quietly ended their working relationship.

HTC said it invited Chou to stay close to the company as a “honorary advisor,” but the wording doesn’t make it clear if Chou accepted the invitation.

Reportedly, Peter Chou last project at HTC was overseeing the launch of the Vive VR headset.

And so, an era is officially, completely over at HTC.

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