A new era for Google dawns as co-founder Larry Page takes over as chief executive officer, three months after the announcement was made.

The move was announced on Jan. 20 when Google put out its fourth quarter results for 2010. With the first quarter ending, the transition from Eric Schmidt to Page has become complete. Paige and Sergey Brin, Google's other co-founder, originally said outgoing CEO Eric Schmidt would stay on as executive chairman. However, recent media reports have Schmidt pegged as the next commerce secretary by President Obama.

Page, who was the original CEO of the company he founded from 1998 until 2001, has big shoes to fill. Under Schmidt, Google grew to unforeseen size and power. Schmidt took over a small, private company still very much in the start-up phase in 2001 to make it into a multinational tech giant with countless services from email to advertising. Today it is one of the largest companies in the U.S., if not the world.

In addition to his successes in growing Google, he was also popular with employees. According to an employee survey from Glassdoor.com, Eric Schmidt was the most popular tech CEO last year, with a 95 percent approval rating.

Schmidt said back when the move was announced he thought his predecessor was up to the challenge. We've been talking about how best to simplify our management structure and speed up decision making for a long time. By clarifying our individual roles we'll create clearer responsibility and accountability at the top of the company. In my clear opinion, Larry is ready to lead and I'm excited about working with both him and Sergey for a long time to come, Schmidt said in an earnings release.

According to a report from The Wall St. Journal, Page has already implemented his style in the company's management, even before he officially took over. The report said Paige looked to cut down on red tape by having product and engineering managers email him directly about their projects.