Bing: NLP, machine learning
pros: the team owns an actual product that generates revenue. Azure is given great emphasis at Microsoft so it is a good org to be in. Also doing scalable distributed systems is useful.
cons: potentially pretty bad work-life balance and on calls. Personally more interested in data science.
Bing (SDE1, but working mostly as a data scientist):
pros: personal interest, also search tech is useful in the long run. NLP&Machine learning is a "hot" field.
cons: there's less sense of a product - sure we're improving some search results, but how would my impact be measured exactly? Also how will machine learning NLP be like in 5-10 years? I know it is one of the hottest field right now but if it doesn't generate revenue I can easily see it go downhill.
Provided managers are comparable, what team would you choose based on career outlook?
There is a lot of challenging work in Azure Networking. Whether you will enjoy it and thrive depends on your talents, nature and some measure of luck ending up with a supportive manager and a team with an impactful charter in a booming economy.
The JEDI contract is a huge deal for Azure and the fallout from that win is expansive and beyond just JEDI. So, a lot of money will be coming into Azure in the next few years.
For now, Azure is a good choice. Do it and see how you like it. If it’s not your cup of tea, you can always do an internal transfer or leave for another company in a couple of years. With a cloud background, you are guaranteed that all the recruiters from cloud players like AWS, OCI, GCP, and more will be calling you the moment you start your job hunt. Notice that they are ALL in Seattle.