Microsoft yesterday announced that Steven Sinofsky, the head of the company's Windows and Windows Live division, left the company effective immediately. You may remember Steven Sinofsky from his rather lengthy post over at the Building Windows blog. While he did not wrote all the posts by himself, he was the front for that blog as all were signed by him personally, and the person responsible for Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system.
Microsoft's press release states that the decision for Sinofsky's departure is mutual, but even if that is the case, one has to wonder about the reason behind the move. What we do know is that Julie Larson-Green will be promoted to lead all Windows software and hardware engineering effective immediately.
Microsoft Corp. today announced that Windows and Windows Live President Steven Sinofsky will be leaving the company and that Julie Larson-Green will be promoted to lead all Windows software and hardware engineering. Tami Reller retains her roles as chief financial officer and chief marketing officer and will assume responsibility for the business of Windows. Both executives will report directly to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.
These changes are effective immediately.
One has to wonder if the departure has anything to do with Windows 8, the new Microsoft operating system that got released less than three weeks ago by the company. While there is no confirmation that the departure has anything to do with Windows 8, one has to ask whether the operating system's performance in sales had anything to do with the decision. Microsoft has not released sales figures for the operating system yet, nor for the Surface RT tablet that the company released alongside the operating system on October 26.
It is likely that sales are not the reason for Sinofsky's departure, as it is not a satisfying enough reason to justify the cloak-and-dagger departure. A power struggle on the other hand, as cliche as it may sound, is more likely. There may be other reasons, like health or taking care of family matters, but those surely would not have ended in such an abrupt departure after all.
But how will the public take it? Will it see Sinofsky's departure as a sign that Windows 8 is not being adopted as well as Microsoft had hoped for? That the new leader will turn the steering wheel around and make Windows 9 a classic desktop operating system again? I honestly can't really see Microsoft make that decision only weeks after the release of Windows 8.
The next couple of months will be interesting, that is for sure. What's your take on the development?
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.