Jun 30

Microsoft acquires Cloudyn

Microsoft has announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Cloudyn, a provider of cloud services cost management tools. These tools enable enterprise customers to identify, measure and analyse consumption as well as forecast future cloud spending. The offerings will be incorporated into Microsoft’s product portfolio to provide a set of multi-cloud management, security and governance solutions.

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Jan 25

Microsoft appoints Kevin Scott as Chief Technology Officer

Microsoft has named Kevin Scott to a newly created role of chief technology officer (CTO) for the company. This is an expansion of Scott’s role at LinkedIn as senior vice president of Infrastructure. As Microsoft’s CTO, Scott will drive strategic, cross-company initiatives and joins Microsoft’s Senior Leadership Team, reporting directly to Satya Nadella (CEO).

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Sep 30

Microsoft announces new AI and Research Group

Microsoft has announced the formation of the Microsoft AI and Research Group, which will be led by Harry Shum. Several of the company’s engineering leaders and teams will join the newly formed group including Information Platform, Cortana, Bing, Ambient Computing and Robotics teams led by David Ku, Derrick Connell and Vijay Mital. All combined, the Microsoft AI and Research Group will encompass AI product engineering, basic and applied research labs as well as New Experiences and Technologies (NExT).

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Jul 08

Microsoft announces leadership changes

Satya Nadella (CEO) has disclosed that Kevin Turner leaves Microsoft at the end of July. With his departure, Satya has made organisational changes that integrate the current SMSG organisation into the rest of Microsoft to form a unified senior leadership team…

  • Judson Althoff will lead the Worldwide Commercial Business, which will focus on the commercial segments, inclusive of EPG, Public Sector, SMS&P, DX and Services.
  • Jean-Philippe Courtois will lead Global Sales, Marketing and Operations, which span all of Microsoft’s 13 areas across our North America and international businesses as well as the global Marketing and Operations organisation.
  • Chris Capossela will lead the Worldwide Marketing and Consumer Business, which includes CCG, MSA and PSM, OEM, and Microsoft Retail Stores, in addition to his current worldwide marketing team.
  • Kurt DelBene will lead IT and Operations, in addition to Corporate Strategy.
  • Amy Hood will lead the current SMSG finance team and WWLP, in addition to the central finance team.

Jean-Philippe and Judson will report directly to Satya and join the senior leadership team. Jean-Philippe will take full accountability for the Microsoft North America business and Judson will remain as acting lead for day-to-day operations until a replacement for him is announced.

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Jul 01

Microsoft appoints Gavriella Schuster as CVP of Worldwide Partner Group

Microsoft has announced the appointment of Gavriella Schuster as the new Corporate Vice President for Microsoft’s Worldwide Partner Group (WPG). Schuster has more than two decades of experience with Microsoft and has been the general manager for WPG.

Phil Sorgen, who was in the role previously, has been appointed as the corporate vice president of the U.S. Enterprise and Partner Group.

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Jun 01

View on Microsoft’s May activities

In spite of selling off its entry level feature phones, along with more staff reductions planned, Microsoft has said that it will continue to support and develop the Lumia brand. Given the company’s ever shrinking mobile phone market share coupled with Satya Nadella’s focus, this is not a huge surprise. Will we see the launch of a Surface Phone at some time in the future?

Microsoft is partnering with the Jenkins community to offer both compute resources and technical expertise to build a development and delivery infrastructure on Linux and Java in the Azure cloud.

Cloud services continue to be the company’s focus as it unveils its vision and roadmap for SharePoint, which focuses on providing file sharing and collaboration on any device as well as becoming an open and extensible platform.

May’s updates to Office 365 include real-time chat integration into the web experiences, as well as new capabilities in Outlook and Visio. The Power BI Desktop May Update, features improvements to Report View, the ability to Publish to a Pyramid Server, analytics and data connectivity.

The company has announced the availability of the PowerShell module for Azure Machine Learning in public preview mode. This is a .NET based PowerShell DLL module that allows end users to manage Azure ML workspaces, experiments, datasets, web services and web service endpoints.

The latest volume of the Microsoft Security Intelligence Report (SIR) has been published and includes threat data from the second half of 2015 as well as longer term trend data on industry vulnerabilities, exploits, malware and malicious websites.

Microsoft has reported that Windows 10 is now running on 300 million active devices around the world. There have been a number of Insider Build releases that include the revised Start Menu as well as a range of other refinements.

Jun 01

Microsoft sells feature phone business

Microsoft has announced that it reached an agreement to sell the company’s entry-level feature phone assets to FIH Mobile, a subsidiary of Hon Hai/Foxconn Technology Group, and HMD Global, Oy for $350 million. As part of the deal, FIH Mobile Ltd. will also acquire Microsoft Mobile Vietnam — the company’s Hanoi, Vietnam, manufacturing facility. Upon close of this deal, approximately 4,500 employees will transfer to, or have the opportunity to join, FIH Mobile Ltd. or HMD Global, Oy, subject to compliance with local law.

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Jan 21

Microsoft announces accessibility organisational changes

Microsoft has announced new structure and leads for making its products more accessible for people with disabilities. Jenny Lay-Flurrie has been appointed as Microsoft’s new Chief Accessibility Officer as part of the Corporate, External, and Legal Affairs (CELA) organisation and will report to Susan Hauser, who is now the Corporate Vice President for the new Business and Corporate Responsibility Group (BCR).

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Jan 04

View on Microsoft’s December activities

On a personal note, I hope everyone had a wonderful time during the holiday season and wish you the very best of success for 2016.

Like most companies, Microsoft has been promoting its software and hardware offerings during the holiday season with an occasional announcement worth reporting.

Microsoft continues paying attention to non-Windows platforms and has released Cortana on select iPhone, Android and Cyanogen OS powered devices. The company also released a preview of the Power BI app for iOS with support for SQL Server 2016 CTP 3.2, which provides delivery of on-premises data to mobile devices and includes out-of-the-box mobile reports and KPI tracking.

On the Azure front, Microsoft announced that Dynamics CRM Online customers will be able to use Azure ExpressRoute to establish a private, managed connection to CRM Online. Updates to Azure Backup include faster backup times, reduced cache space and an increase in the number of recovery points for cloud backups.

As part of promoting HoloLens, Microsoft has opened the first ongoing HoloLens experience showcase for developers at its store in New York – appointment required.

2015 saw the release of Windows 10 and Office 2016, an extraordinary amount of activity evolving its non-Windows platform offerings, the continued evolution of the Azure platform and the “restructure” of its acquired Nokia phone business.