Windows President Steven Sinofsky Quits Microsoft

In what is very surprising news coming out of the Remembrance/Veteran's Day weekend, Microsoft has revealed that Windows and Windows Live President Steven Sinofsky will be leaving the company effective immediately. Sinofsky was at the helm of Office products and lead the teams on the development of Windows 7 and 8 products.

Filling Sinofsky's shoes will be a pair of existing Microsoft employees. Julie Larson-Green will be promoted to lead all Windows software and hardware engineering. Tami Reller will assume responsibility for the business of Windows while retaining her role as chief financial officer and chief marketing officer. Both executives will report directly to Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

“It is impossible to count the blessings I have received over my years at Microsoft. I am humbled by the professionalism and generosity of everyone I have had the good fortune to work with at this awesome company,” Sinofsky said.

“I am grateful for the many years of work that Steven has contributed to the company,” Ballmer said. “The products and services we have delivered to the market in the past few months mark the launch of a new era at Microsoft. We’ve built an incredible foundation with new releases of Microsoft Office, Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, Microsoft Surface, Windows Server 2012 and ‘Halo 4,’ and great integration of services such as Bing, Skype and Xbox across all our products. To continue this success it is imperative that we continue to drive alignment across all Microsoft teams, and have more integrated and rapid development cycles for our offerings.”

About Julie Larson-Green

Since 1993, Larson-Green has worked on and led some of the most successful products for Microsoft, including the user experiences for early versions of Internet Explorer, and helped drive the thinking behind the refresh of the user experience for Microsoft Office. For Windows 7 and Windows 8 she was responsible for program management, user interface design and research, as well as development of all international releases. She has a master's degree in software engineering from Seattle University and a bachelor's degree in business administration from Western Washington University. In her new role she will be responsible for all future Windows product development in addition to future hardware opportunities.

About Tami Reller

Reller joined Windows in 2007 from the Microsoft Dynamics Division where she held a number of leadership positions. She began her career in technology at Great Plains Software in 1984 while still in college, and was the company’s chief financial officer at the time the company was acquired by Microsoft in 2001. She has a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Minnesota State University Moorhead and an MBA from St. Mary's College in Moraga, Calif. In her expanded role she will assume the lead in driving business and marketing strategy for Windows devices, including Surface and partner devices, in addition to her current marketing and finance responsibilities.

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Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • wannabepro
    If he was responsible for Windows 8, I'm not sure it's such a bad thing. Hopefully we can get some real innovation reliant upon customer input in the OS and XBOX environments.
  • Darth Maul is dead, Always two Sith there are, never more never less.
  • boyabunda
    Bury Microsoft to the ground with Windows 8 then leave = Genius plan
  • diddo
    At an end your rule is, and not short enough was it.
    If so good Windows 8 is for MS future... why leave?
  • Microsoft Employee: Ah, MR. Sinofsky. we need to make the Metro GUI optional on windows 8!

    Sinofsky: No, Never! It will be Metro, The customers do not know what they want! until I tell... I tell them, and They want what I tell them to want!

    Microsoft Employee: But the surveys say otherwise!

    Sinofsky: Then the surveys are wrong! Can't you see this black turtleneck sweater I'am wearing! This means I am ALL KNOWING! Can you not see that I am the SECOND COMING!

    Microsoft Employee: Okaaaaay!

  • f-14
    he was ' let go' in the middle of the night.

    who quits in the middle of the night with a prearranged press conference ?


    he was fired here is why:

    "If you followed any of the news around the Windows 8 launch, you'll know that it didn't go so well. People who tested the software found to be confusing, and the company scrambled to do damage control in the days that followed. "

    microsoft makes software for business, this whole 'touch' thing is microsoft trying to be apple like at selling a product to consumers, not businesses.

    if microsoft was aiming windows 8 at businesses they would have made it with mostly voice recognition/command.

    windows 8 is such a dismal flop worse than vista the people who designed it are getting fired!

    $38-$89 product at launch when most other windows since windows 98 have luanched at $200-$300.

    think on that it speaks VOLUMES about microsofts confidence in this product.

    where is ME ? ME didn't even last 2 years i'm pretty sure it was discontinued within almost 1 year of it's launch, but i don't care to remember ME was THAT terrible.
    ME was priced about the same as windows 8 is now.

    windows 8 is in the same boat and will be just as short history.
  • And Now! we get Julie (The Ribbon Lady) Larson-Green! And the pretty tiles will be transformed into Ribbons! Ribbons of silver and gold! We have gone from Flooring to the Sewing and fabrics isle in the little Microsoft shop of horrible interfaces! Clean up in aisle 5!
  • rosen380
    So it takes two women to do a man's job... :)

  • AndreT
    Julie Larson-Green also designed the Metro UI.

    Also, @f-14 the OS is so cheap because they want everyone to adopt it so the Microsoft store gets a foot hold. That's where the real money is.
  • DRosencraft
    Obviously no one really knows what happened except those people in the room, but I don't see any reason to doubt that he quit of his own volition. I do happen to like 8, but that's beside the point for now. With little news on how good or bad the OS is doing, and the fact that official numbers won't be out for a little while longer, MSFT would be stupid to try to push this guy out now, which would obviously start rumors of 8 doing very poorly, and therefore hurt sales further. They would want to hold him on for a while longer until just before the official numbers, definitely after the holiday shopping season, to avoid a sales hit. Of course, someone wants to quit there's not much you can do to stop them. I think he more likely quit than was forced out.