HomeWinBuzzer NewsMicrosoft Announces Mixed Reality and Azure Layoffs and Future Plans

Microsoft Announces Mixed Reality and Azure Layoffs and Future Plans

Microsoft has revealed plans to let go of around 1,000 employees, signaling another round of workforce reductions


has started a reorganization within its Mixed Reality division, leading to a series of . While the exact number of positions affected remains undisclosed, the company has provided confirmation through an email to CNBC.

A spokesperson said:
Earlier today we announced a restructuring of the Microsoft's Mixed Reality organization. We remain fully committed to the Department of Defense's IVAS program and will continue to deliver cutting edge technology to support our soldiers. In addition, we will continue to invest in W365 to reach the broader Mixed Reality hardware ecosystem. We will continue to sell while supporting existing HoloLens 2 customers and partners.

Restructuring and Strategic Shifts

Despite the restructuring, Microsoft's dedication to the Department of Defense's Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) program persists. This initiative is designed to provide advanced technological capabilities to military personnel. Furthermore, support for the HoloLens 2 headset continues, with existing users and partners assured of ongoing assistance and product availability.

This restructuring is part of Microsoft's evolving strategy in Mixed Reality. In August 2023, the development responsibilities for the Mixed Reality Toolkit were shifted to a GitHub organization. Later, in December 2023, the company announced that Windows Mixed Reality would be deprecated. Support for consumer versions of Windows Mixed Reality will cease on November 1, 2026, while commercial support will extend until November 1, 2027. Notably, all current Windows Mixed Reality headsets will not be compatible with version 24H2.

Microsoft continues to support the HoloLens 2, having released the Windows Holographic version 24H1. A specialized version of the HoloLens 2 is currently being trialed by the US Department of Defense for use in military contexts. Additionally, Microsoft maintains support for other Mixed Reality devices, including Xbox Cloud Gaming and Office applications for Meta Quest and Vision Pro headsets.

Layoffs at Azure Division

Reports from Business Insider indicate also substantial reductions within the Azure for Operators and Mission Engineering departments, affecting hundreds of employees. This comes after a significant workforce reduction of over 10,000 employees more than a year ago. The company has since completed the acquisition of Activision-Blizzard, made substantial investments in AI technology, and introduced a lineup of Surface devices powered by Qualcomm's chips, highlighting the development of “AI PCs.”

Established in 2021, the Azure for Operators and Mission Engineering department includes notable projects like the Azure Space unit, which collaborates with companies like SpaceX to deploy portable data centers. Additionally, other teams within this group focus on advancing telecommunications and quantum computing technology.

Markus Kasanmascheff
Markus Kasanmascheff
Markus is the founder of WinBuzzer and has been playing with Windows and technology for more than 25 years. He is holding a Master´s degree in International Economics and previously worked as Lead Windows Expert for Softonic.com.

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