Microsoft Chief Product Officer Panos Panay spoke about Windows 11 at the Windows 11 launch event, which was live streamed on June 24, 2021.
Microsoft product chief Panos Panay will leave the software and hardware maker, Executive Vice President Rajesh Jha told employees on Monday.
The change represents a turnaround after more than a decade of sales of Microsoft’s Surface PC, which Panay has introduced to consumers at company events. Surface sales have failed to keep pace with the growth of cloud services, and Windows, a source of profitable revenue, has yet to return to growth even after the pandemic triggered a shopping frenzy.
But the company is not leaving these two areas.
“We remain steadfast and steadfast in our strategy and Youssef Mehdi will lead externally on our Windows and Surface businesses and products,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in a statement. Mehdi, who joined Microsoft in 1992, is Microsoft’s chief consumer marketing officer.
Jha wrote in his memo to employees that as part of the changes, Charles Simonyi, who led the development of Microsoft’s popular Word and Excel applications, is joining the management teams of the Experiences and Devices group, in charge of This is Jha. Simoni, now 75, rejoined Microsoft as a technical fellow in 2017 after the company acquired his startup Intentional Software.
“Our commitment to Surface and MR remains unchanged,” Jha wrote, referring to mixed reality, a category that includes Microsoft’s Hololens augmented-reality device.
The leadership changes involving Panos’ departure will be effective immediately, just three days before Microsoft holds an event in New York where the company is expected to announce its next generation of Surface devices.
After 10 years on the market, the Surface PC failed to gain more than a few percentage points of market share in shipments, although the device design has inspired other device makers that sell Windows machines. Microsoft earns revenue from licenses sold to these device manufacturers.
Panay joined Microsoft in 2004 as group program manager on PC software. He assumed additional leadership of Windows, the world’s leading PC operating system, in 2020. And since 2021, he has been a part of the company’s senior leadership team. He has not yet announced his future plans.
“After 19 incredible years at Microsoft, I’ve decided to turn the page and write the next chapter,” he said. wrote On X, this platform was previously known as Twitter. “I am forever grateful for my time at Microsoft and the amazing people I had the honor of building products with.”
Read the full memorandum below.
After nearly 20 years at the company, Panos Panay has decided to leave Microsoft. Panos has had an incredible impact on our products and culture, as well as the broader device ecosystem. Under Panos’ leadership, the team built the iconic Surface brand with beloved products. Most recently, as Windows leaders, the team has brought amazing services and experiences to millions of people on innovative devices, including our OEM partners with Windows 11. He will be missed and I am personally very grateful for his many contributions over the years. Please join me in wishing him well.
Going forward, we will double down on our strategy. With Panos’ help in the transition, these changes will take effect immediately.
- Build silicon, systems, and devices that span Windows, clients, and cloud for an AI world. This team will be led by Pawan Davuluri, who will report directly to me. Brett Ostrom, Nino Storniolo, Linda Everett, Ken Pan, Ralph Groene, Aidan Marcus, Carlos Picotto, Stevie Bathich, Robin Seiler, Ruben Caballero and Anuj Gosalia will move on with their teams to report to Pawan. Windows planning and release management will remain in this team. Our commitment to Surface and MR remains unchanged.
- Create experiences that blend the web, services, and Windows for an AI world. To this end, Shilpa Ranganathan, Jeff Johnson and Ali Akgun will report directly to Mikhail Parakhin and will move forward with their teams to form a new Windows and Web Experience team.
- Youssef Mehdi will be responsible for leading the Windows and Surface businesses alongside our OEM and retail partners.
Additionally, Charles Simonyi, Terry Chudzik and Erin Kolb will join the E+D management teams and Ralph Groen and Mike Davidson will work together on best alignment across the design teams.
We will schedule an AMA to answer questions in the coming days. Let us remain focused on implementing our existing plans. Thank you for all you do, and the impact you have on our customers and partners.
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