Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFTB) is about to undergo a major reorganization involving sales and marketing, according to company executives. Employees were told recently that the changes were designed to “better serve our customers and partners.”
Although none of the notes from the company mentioned layoffs, media reports have said layoffs could happen and could be massive, including thousands of employees.
Related: ALL OUT APPLE BLITZ COMING
Focus On Cloud
Following a leadership change in sales and marketing, the company appears to be poised to make its cloud service, Azure, the focus of future efforts in that arena. Last year Judson Althoff and Jean-Philippe Courtois took over sales and marketing after COO Keven Turner left. Althoff had been critical of previous sales emphasis and has said he was eager to make Azure a central part of the company’s focus.
Analysts noted that time is right for change. Microsoft’s fiscal year ends in July and in recent years the company has used that time frame to announce layoffs and major changes in direction.
Azure Doing Well
From a business perspective Microsoft's Azure cloud business has done well. The company noted that Azure revenue nearly doubled in Q3, achieving 93% sales growth. This in the face of stiff competition from Amazon.com Inc.’s (NASDAQ:AMZND) Amazon Web Services.
Coincidentally, last July the company said it would cut 2,850 jobs over the year related to the fact the company was exiting the smartphone business. According to the Puget Sound Business Journal, Microsoft will officially announce it change of focus July 5.
Delay To Windows 10 Timeline
In other news, Microsoft said it would delay the implementation of its new Timeline feature, which was set to come out this coming fall. The Timeline feature allows Windows 10 users to switch from one device to another. This includes both Android and iOS smartphones.
The unique feature would, in effect, allow you to pick up where you left off – even if it is on another device. This is similar in structure to Apple Inc.’s (NASDAQ:AAPLB) continuity feature in iOS and MacOS.
Another recent product development at Microsoft is its first-ever Surface laptop. The keyboard is not detachable and it is not a laptop. It does include a touch screen and functions as a well-designed laptop. The product was designed to be a student laptop.
The product runs a new version of Windows 10 called “S.” It is similar to an iPhone in the sense you can only install apps from the Windows Store (unless you unlock it). Surface Laptop comes in 4 colors, features a fabric finish around the keyboard and starts at $999.