Why is Kareem Choudhry Leaving Microsoft and What Does It Mean for Xbox?


According to Windows Central, Kareem Choudhry, a long-serving executive at Microsoft’s Xbox division, is leaving the company after more than 26 years.

This high-profile departure comes just six months after a major shakeup in Xbox leadership and amid ongoing changes to Microsoft’s gaming strategy.

Choudhry was known for his work on key Xbox initiatives in XEmTech team, including the development of backward compatibility support and the launch of Xbox Cloud Gaming (xCloud) in 2019.

More recently, he had been focused on Microsoft’s AI plans for Xbox, including a new Xbox AI chatbot that was revealed earlier this week.

Restructuring and Reorganization at Xbox

In the wake of Choudhry’s departure, Microsoft is making some organizational changes within the Xbox division.

Choudhry’s former team, Xbox Emerging Tech (XEmTech org), is being moved to the Xbox hardware side, which is led by Roanne Sones.

Additionally, a new Xbox Experiences and Platforms team has been created, with Ashley McKissick and Kevin Gammill taking the helm.

These changes suggest that Microsoft is looking to more closely integrate its hardware and software efforts, potentially with a focus on improving the overall Xbox experience across Windows and Xbox consoles.

Microsoft’s Evolving Gaming Strategy

This latest shake-up at Xbox comes at a time when Microsoft is reevaluating its gaming strategy.

Earlier this year, the company made the decision to bring some previously Xbox-exclusive games to platforms like PlayStation 5 and Nintendo Switch, with Grounded and Sea of Thieves being the upcoming titles to launch on Sony’s console in April after HiFi Rush and Pentiment released last month.

Also according to rumors, Microsoft is planning to continue to evaluate the possibility of bringing more Xbox-exclusive games to other platforms.

The performance of Sea of Thieves and other titles on PlayStation 5 will likely be a key factor in determining whether this strategy is expanded further.

In a recent interview with Polygon, Xbox gaming chief Phil Spencer hinted at the potential for an Xbox handheld device, as well as the possibility of bringing PC stores like Steam and Epic Games Store to the Xbox platform.

These comments suggest that Microsoft is still exploring various avenues to grow and evolve in both the software and hardware side.

Microsoft is likely to announce its strategy changes in the upcoming Xbox showcase, which is scheduled to take place on Sunday, June 9th.

During this event, Microsoft is expected to announce new hardware dubbed as “the biggest technological leap ever in a generation, as well as provide release dates for other upcoming Xbox titles, such as Microsoft Flight Simulator 2024, Avowed, Indiana Jones and the Great Circle, and the next installment of the Call of Duty franchise.

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