Blake Irving, a Corporate Vice President in Microsoft's Windows Live Platform group, is resigning his post, according to sources close to the company.
Irving, a 15-year Microsoft veteran, is in charge of the back-end Live platform -- the datacenter, technical operations, advertising intelligence, security, identity, VOIP, mobile and application services being built across Windows Live, Office Live, Xbox Live and other Microsoft applications.
No word on where Irving is going or who his replacement will be. But sources said Irving will likely remain at Microsoft for several months before hanging up his Live hat.
When asked for comment on Irving's plans, Microsoft officials declined to comment.
Microsoft has been struggling to create a cohesive Live story for more than a year. The company is building up a family of Live services designed to complement existing Microsoft software products, as well as accompanying Live development platforms. The Live branding strategy has been in disarray.
In March 2006, Microsoft shook up its MSN/Windows Live group and created three distinct units:
* Windows and Windows Live Group engineering group headed by Steven Sinofsky. This is the team in charge of delivering "Windows Live experiences."
* Online Business Group, formerly headed by David Cole and now Steve Berkowitz. The team in charge of advertising sales, business development and marketing for the Live platform.
* Windows Live Platform Group, headed by Irving. The team designed to unite the platforms and services behind Microsoft's various MSN and Live properties.
Irving joined Microsoft in October 1992 and "has served in a variety of development and general management positions" at Microsoft, according to his bio on the Microsoft Web site. "Irving and his teams have been responsible for Microsoft’s first Internet video conferencing and collaboration products, Internet phone, Internet mail client and instant messaging and blogging service. Irving has held development and marketing management roles on the Microsoft Internet Explorer browser software and Windows operating system teams," his bio adds.