Latest Microsoft reorganization reportedly focuses on Mixed Reality push

Windows Mixed Reality has become a major focus for Microsoft going forward, and it looks as if that push has extended to a shakeup of Microsoft's internal team structure. According to a report from Petri (via ZDNet), Microsoft has gone through with a small reorganization effort that shuffles several of its teams based around its augmented, mixed, and virtual reality efforts.

The most interesting moves appear to be the creation of a new Mixed Reality Studio focused on "Mixed Reality in the Modern Workplace," and the combination of Microsoft's Every Day Magic (EDM) and Evoke studios. EDM is responsible for Paint 3D, Remix3D, Mixed Reality Viewer, and development of apps across mixed, virtual, and augmented reality. The Evoke team is behind the Photos and Videos app. The combined groups will now report to Chris Pratley, who is a notable figure within Microsoft for his work on OneNote and Sway.

Along with the above changes, Microsoft is also reported to be reorganizing its New Experiences and Technologies (NeXT) team, which is part of its AI and research group. Changes include:

  • Graph and Data: A new team defining the capabilities and creative vision for how data and analytics become a crucial element in defining user experiences.
  • Foundry: Incubating new types of experiences plus pushing and validating platform and hardware incubation that bring value across NEXT strategic initiatives.
  • Source: Focuses on data reporting, AppsPortal, and validation with hardware partners.
  • Education: This is a new team to drive wide efforts in education which the company hopes will be the next big growth area for the org.
  • S&O: Product innovation through trend analysis and business design.
  • Basecamp: this team is the storytelling side of NEXT and the Community, Content and SpecIT teams are moving under this umbrella.
  • Design Activation: This is a new team focused on NEXT wide UX and audio designs. Studio Maya: This is a new operation based in India and is focused on mixed reality and 2D devices.
  • Data Compliance: A new team helping to maintain that helps the team maintain compliance and meet standards such as business rules and data definition/integrity.
  • Data Science: Data analysis and product insight for NEXT data.

Ultimately, all of these shuffles will only be felt internally, and it's doubtful that outside users of Microsoft's products will notice anything different. However, this reorganization effort does appear to be responsible for the small round of layoffs confirmed by Microsoft this week.