Microsoft Executive VP Julie Larson-Green moves from devices to services

In seeming preparation for Microsoft's takeover of Nokia's handset business, the executive musical chairs recommences.
Written by Mary Jo Foley, Senior Contributing Editor

Microsoft's Julie Larson-Green, the Executive Vice President of Devices & Studios, has a new job inside Microsoft.


Larson-Green announced internally on February 24 her intentions to take on a new role reporting to Qi Lu, who is the Executive Vice President of Applications and Services.

Larson-Green was in line to report to Stephen Elop, the incoming head of Microsoft's Devices team once Microsoft's acquisition of Nokia's devices business becomes final. Elop was one of the candidates to replace Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. But given he didn't get the job, he now is set to become the head of Microsoft's devices business.

For the past seven months -- since Microsoft management reorganized the company last summer -- 20-year Microsoft veteran Larson-Green had led the Devices and Studios group with responsibility for all hardware development including Xbox, Surface and accessories. She also oversaw Microsoft Studios, which "include(d) development of games, entertainment and premium content experiences for all devices across the company."

Larson-Green will take on her new role once Elop officially rejoins Microsoft, which is set to happen once the Microsoft acquisition of Nokia's handset business officially closes. That's still slated to happen in this calendar quarter, Microsoft execs have said. Until then, she remains in her current role.

Larson-Green's new title is Chief Experience Officer (CXO) of the "My Life & Work" team in Lu's Applications and Services Group (ASG). As far as I know, she is currently the only CXO at Microsoft.

What does that title mean? I hear she'll be overseeing the unification of experiences across different services, including Skype, Bing and OneDrive. Given her design focus during her time at Microsoft, that new job makes sense.

Here's Larson-Green's memo to the Microsoft troops about her new job:

Sent: Monday, February 24, 2014
Subject: FW: ASG Organizational Announcement


As you will read in the notes below from Qi and Satya, I’ve accepted a new challenge, leading the My Life & Work team in ASG and serving as the Chief Experience Officer (CXO). As hard as it is for me to leave Devices & Studios, I’m thrilled about this opportunity. In working with company leaders this year to establish our One Microsoft vision and plan, I thought about ways I could have impact on helping Microsoft prepare for the future and innovate. My discussions with Satya and Qi made clear this is a critical space to drive new thinking and an essential way to help the shape the company’s direction. I’m looking forward to developing the Digital Life & Digital Work Experience Substrate that powers modern digital experiences regardless of device, as well as working across ASG to strengthen customer experiences.

I want to thank each and every one of you for welcoming me and supporting me as the leader of Devices & Studios over the past 7 months. I’m very proud of what we have accomplished during such a short timeframe. We launched Xbox One, Surface 2 & Pro 2, blockbuster games like Forza and Ryse, a brand new Xbox Music and Video service, PPI, and some amazing unannounced innovations just to name a few – incredibly impressive!

Our opportunity to grow as a world-class devices and experiences company is greater than ever, and I have every belief that as One Microsoft we’re on the right path. The addition of Nokia Devices & Services into the DnS family will add tremendous scale, talent and opportunity for our future.

I’ll remain in role leading the DnS organization in the interim until the Nokia deal closes and Stephen Elop makes his transition to Microsoft. We’ve been meeting regularly throughout and are making a lot of progress, ensuring our teams are ready for the Day 1 close and beyond.

You are all in great hands with Stephen and already we’ve shared a lot with him and his LT from Nokia regarding all of the fantastic people, teams and products in DnS. I also know many of you are looking forward to welcoming the Nokia team and working more closely with them.

As I look to the future, I’m reminded of a favorite Chinese proverb: "To get through the hardest journey we need take only one step at a time, but we must keep on stepping.”

I encourage you all to stay focused on the journey and opportunities ahead, and know that I’ll be there in step with you as we launch the next chapter of Microsoft...

Thank you,


Larson-Green reported to former Microsoft Windows President Steven Sinofsky during his tenure both as Windows and Office chief.

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