Microsoft lets go of Windows chief as part of a major reorganisation

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Build 17634 was probably already in the can before Microsoft planned to announce Terry Myerson's departure, but it'll be interesting to see how the company prioritizes Windows development, treatment of Insider testing and access to engineers in the future. The first group is developing the core technologies used by Microsoft's Mixed Reality device group and Azure customers working on augmented reality or virtual reality, while the second focuses on AI-driven cloud services that are made available to Azure customers.

The introduction of Windows 10 with S mode, which delivers predictable performance and quality through Microsoft-verified apps via Microsoft Store, has also contributed to the uptake of the operating system by customers and partners for its performance and reliability.

Microsoft moving its Windows franchise, the product largely responsible for its rise as a tech powerhouse, from the center of its operations. The company managed to turn its individual on-premises Office products into a cloud bundle with Office 365 - which is growing even faster than Microsoft itself expected.

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The company counts Facebook and Samsung among its partners and passed 12 billion search requests monthly this year. The company offers IoT platform to product-based firms to accelerate and integrate their data into other systems.

Hardware devices and Windows for PCs shift to a new group called "Experiences & Devices" to be run by Rajesh Jha, who oversaw the Office software unit.

The shakeup brings with it many questions, about Microsoft's future and what impact this will have on Windows and its other service.

With today's moves, Microsoft is not throwing in the towel on Windows or its Surface line. Panos Panay becomes chief product officer and devices leader. Kudo Tsunoda is continuing to spearhead the NEXT (New Experiences and Technology) business, which had its own reorg earlier this year. He has served the company for 21 years, joining Microsoft after it purchased Interse Corporation, founded by Myerson. Jason Zander is Executive Vice-President for Azure and Scott Guthrie will lead AI Platform+Cloud. The thinking is by bringing Windows client, server, and cloud all together, Microsoft will be able to better build a common infrastructure and application model across all flavors of Windows. The Cloud + AI group will also be absorbing some other parts of Microsoft, including the AI research team. Alex and team will take guidance on all AI-related areas from Harry Shum and work very closely with AI + Research (AI+R). Cloud AI Platform Corporate VP Joseph Sirosh will join this new group, as well. Simply say to Cortana, "Show me how to change my background", and you'll get the previous help results, with a new "Let's go" button below, which launches the guided help experience.