Enlarge / Microsoft’s Surface Pro 9. Panos Panay has been responsible for the Surface series since its launch.

Andrew Cunningham

Microsoft’s Panos Panay, who has been responsible for the Surface hardware line throughout its existence and Windows development since 2020, is leaving the company, according to a press release issued by Microsoft today. Panay’s responsibilities on the Surface and Windows teams will be handled by Consumer Chief Marketing Officer Yusuf Mehdi, who notably served as the face of most of the company’s big generative AI-related announcements over the last year.

“Thank you, Panos, for your impact on our products, our culture, our company and our industry over the last two decades. “I am grateful for your leadership, support and everything you have done for Microsoft and our customers and partners,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella wrote in a message released to the press. “We remain steadfast and convinced of our strategy. and Yusuf Mehdi will lead our Windows and Surface businesses and products externally.”

If you’ve ever seen a Microsoft Surface announcement, you’ll know Panay by his emotional demeanor, his soulful eyes, his colorful shirts, and how genuinely he seemed to relish the opportunity to tell you what processors Microsoft was coming up with next year Laptops would be used. Panay joined Microsoft in 2004 and was most recently promoted to the company’s leadership team in 2021.


Panay at the Surface Pro 3 announcement event in 2014.

Andrew Cunningham

Microsoft emphasized that the shakeup in its leadership team would not have a near-term impact on any of its current products, including Surface and the company’s mixed reality hardware efforts.

While Mehdi will “take responsibility for leading the Windows and Surface business with our OEM and retail partners,” writes Rajesh Jha, Microsoft’s executive vice president, other Microsoft veterans will also step in to lead the company’s hardware and software business to keep the company running. Pavan Davuluri will be in charge of a team that is “building”.[s] Silicon, systems and devices that span Windows, client and cloud for an AI world” and will also be responsible in particular for “Windows planning and release management”. Mikhail Parakhin will be responsible for a new “Windows and Web Experiences Team”. This will “create experiences that connect web, services and Windows for an AI world.”

The timeline for Panay’s departure is unclear; be post It’s unclear whether Panay will be on stage at Microsoft’s next Surface hardware event, scheduled to take place later this week on September 21st.

Mehdi also has a long history with Microsoft, starting in 1992 with the marketing of Windows 3.1 and 95 before leading marketing for early (and highly influential) versions of Internet Explorer. To the extent that Panay’s departure will accelerate and intensify the push to integrate new AI-powered features into Windows 11 and future versions, the AI ​​push currently appears to be a company-wide mandate larger than any single executive.

Source : arstechnica.com

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