Microsoft Windows and Surface leader Panos Panay is departing the company after 19 years

Panos Panay, who joined Microsoft in 2004 and has led the Windows and Surface divisions for a number of years, is leaving the company. The Verge has posted an internal email from Microsoft's Rajesh Jha, its vice president of experience and devices, about this sudden and unexpected move:

The email stated, in part:

After nearly 20 years at the company, Panos Panay has decided to leave Microsoft. Panos has had an incredible impact on our products and culture as well as the broader devices ecosystem. Under Panos’ leadership, the team created the iconic Surface brand with loved products. More recently, as the leader of Windows, the team has brought amazing services and experiences to hundreds of millions with Windows 11 on innovative devices including those from our OEM partners. He will be missed, and I am personally very grateful for his many contributions over the years. Please join me in wishing him well.

A specific reason for his departure was not revealed.

In his own X (formerly Twitter) post, Panay made his own statement about his departure, saying only that he "decided to turn the page and write the next chapter." He added, "I’m forever grateful for my time at Microsoft and the amazing people I had the honor to make products with."

The announcement of Panay's departure comes just a few days before Microsoft is scheduled to hold a media event in New York City on September 21, where the company was expected to reveal new refreshes for its some of its Surface PC products, along with some updates on Windows 11.

Indeed, Panay posted on his X account on August 28 that he was "Pumped to be in NYC on September 21 talking AI innovation from Microsoft!" Clearly, something happened in the past few weeks that caused him to leave before that event.

While he joined the company in 2004, Panay became better known to the general public in 2012, when he helped to lead the development of Microsoft's Surface product alongside the release of Windows 8. In 2015, he took over as the head of engineering efforts for all of Microsoft's premium offerings. In 2020, he was put in charge of Microsoft's Windows hardware and software efforts and helped to lead the development of Windows 11.

Report a problem with article
Next Article

The Elder Scrolls 6 will not be released on PlayStation 5

Microsoft logo symbol monochrome with orange outer glow on dark background
Previous Article

Microsoft may be working to stream PC games as well as Xbox titles

Join the conversation!

Login or Sign Up to read and post a comment.

44 Comments - Add comment