In a major surprise move, Microsoft has announced that Steven Sinofsky, its Windows head, will be leaving the company after the recent launch of one of the biggest products for Microsoft i.e Windows 8. Mr. Sinofsky led the recent complete overhaul of Windows into a single product for both personal computers as well as touch enabled devices like tablets. Microsoft had been lagging quite behind the rival Apple as it failed to catch the touch enabled devices bandwagon in time. However, the decision to release a single hybrid Windows for PC and touch devices has been controversial right from the start and even invited ridicule from Apple CEO Tim Cook.
Microsoft recently said that Windows 8 was a big success as compared to previous versions of Windows with 4 million users buying Windows 8 in first four days. However, analysts are taking these claims with a grain of salt and holding that the real picture will emerge after the businesses determine the fate of Windows 8 by deciding to switch to it or otherwise.
Mr. Sinofsky rose in the ranks of Microsoft very rapidly after he was brought in to manage the debacle of Windows Vista, an OS Microsoft would like to forget for ever. Mr. Sinofsky oversaw the release of Windows 7, a very stable and liked operating system. Some people considered him to be the leader at Microsoft after Steve Ballmer. He worked with Microsoft for 23 years and had a reputation of being a hard task master delivering many large and successful software projects in time without the delays witnessed in the case of Windows Vista. However, he also carried the reputation of being ambitious and someone who would create tensions with peers at Microsoft.
He recently came in for some criticism for not wooing enough developers to develop apps for Windows 8. This is being considered as the single most important disadvantage of Windows 8. He was also blamed for Microsoft’s deviation from the terms agreed with European regulators. This is something Microsoft will have to pay for. No reason for the departure of Mr. Sinofsky was given with Ballmer grudgingly acknowledging his work at Microsoft: “I am grateful for the many years of work that Steven has contributed to the company.”
Microsoft has announced that Julie Larso-Green, another Windows product manager at Microsoft, will take over his responsibilities. Steve Ballmer, while welcoming her, said that she has the “proven ability to effectively collaborate and drive a cross-company agenda”.