Terry Myerson: We are now approaching 700 million active Windows 10 users

The most notable change is Terry Myerson, who headed Microsoft's Windows and Devices Group (WDG) since 2013, and is now leaving the company.

The driver behind the move is the forthcoming departure of Terry Myerson, a 21-year Microsoft veteran who serves as executive vice president of the Windows and Devices Group.

Microsoft is also creating two new engineering teams focusing on artificial intelligence and its cloud business. Nadella said that Rajesh Jha, the company's executive vice president for its Product group, will take charge of the new Experiences and Devices division. Microsoft's cloud computing division, Azure, has been one of its fastest growing businesses, and its Office 365 subscription service is attracting users quicker than many expected.

Restructuring moves laid out in a memo from chief executive Satya Nadella included the departure of longtime Microsoft executive and Windows head Terry Myerson. Jha also gets Microsoft's business helping corporations manage their mobile devices and software and a unit that develops new ways to interact with computers, like the HoloLens and XBox Kinect. They also talked about Myerson's plans after the transition completes (and the significant changes will be smoothed thanks to Myerson's cooperation over the coming months).

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Brad Anderson will continue as head of enterprise mobility and management, leading Windows Enterprise deployment and management, "with even tighter alignment across Microsoft 365, partnering closely with the EMS [enterprise mobility and security] teams within Cloud + AI Platform", Nadella says.

Joe Belfiore will be staying on to lead development on Windows and Panos Panay will continue to lead development on Surface products. Jason Zander has been promoted to Executive Vice President of Azure Cloud.

Analyst Rob Enderle of the Enderle Group, meanwhile, sees Microsoft's new emphasis on hardware as part of a push to avoid falling behind the competition. The Universal Store and Commerce Platform team will join the Cloud + AI Platform team. Eric Boyd, now corporate vice president of AI data and infrastructure will lead a new AI Cognitive Services & Platform team and drive Microsoft's a variety of AI and machine learning services.

Nadella shared the news in an email to employees. AI + Research, the company's third engineering team that "is instrumental in the key technology advances required across all our product teams", will still be led by Harry Shum, Mr. Nadella wrote. For instance, Nadella said, "we are investing in strategies and tools for detecting and addressing bias in AI systems and implementing new requirements established by the GDPR [General Data Protection Regulation]".

  • Delia Davidson