Joe Belfiore, the former head of Windows Phone, to leave Microsoft after 32 years

Microsoft's Joe Belfiore at Build 2018
(Image credit: Future)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft Corporate Vice President Joe Belfiore will leave Microsoft after being with the company for 32 years.
  • Belfiore currently heads the Office Group alongside CVP Ales Holecek and will serve as a senior advisor and coach until summer 2023 to help with the transition.
  • Holecek will continue to be CVP of the group and will be joined by CVP Sumit Chauhan.
  • Belfiore was known by many as the face of Windows Phone as he led that division from 2009 to 2013.

Microsoft Corporate Vice President Joe Belfiore will leave Microsoft after 32 years with the company. Belfiore has served in several roles at Microsoft but is currently the CVP of Office. His plans to retire were announced internally in an email sent out to employees (via ZDNet) and later shared publicly on Twitter

Belfiore will be a senior advisor and coach to aid the transition until summer 2023. The Office Group will be led by CVP Ales Holecek, who has led the division alongside Belfiore for several years, and CVP Sumit Chauhan, who will move up from their role as head of Office Organization.

Many of our readers know Belfiore best for his time in charge of Windows Phone. He co-led that division from 2009 to 2013, which included Microsoft's acquisition of Nokia. Belfiore then went on to lead the Windows 10 team for almost five years.

In 2018, Belfiore moved to a new role leading the Essential Products Group, which included Windows 10, Microsoft Edge, Surface software, and several mobile applications. He then became head of the Office Product Group, which is his current role. Belfiore's full work experience is detailed on LinkedIn.

Belfiore explained on Twitter that he will focus on spending time with his family following his departure from Microsoft. Occasionally in the corporate world, the phrase "spend more time with family" is code for a forced departure. That doesn't appear to be the case here. ZDNet reported that Belfiore's move was a personal decision and that the Office team's priorities will remain the same after his departure.

Belfiore took a leave of absence for one year in 2015 to spend time with his family. He then returned and worked for Microsoft until 2020 before taking another leave of absence to travel with his family.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at