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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

May 21, 2007 at 2:49 PM

Microsoft’s reorg: All about Google, IBM and Apple?

Rob Helm speculated that Friday’s reorganization positioned Jeff Raikes to become Microsoft’s next chief executive someday.

That’s interesting. It also seems pretty clear that Platforms boss Kevin Johnson’s duties were pared so he can focus on making the aQuantive merger work well.

But doesn’t it seem like the broad-brush effect was to align Microsoft around its primary competitors?

Jeff Raikes is now operating an organization that stacks up against IBM (and Red Hat, Sun and Apache).

Robbie Bach’s group was already squared off against Apple and Sony.

Now, Kevin Johnson’s group is tailored for the fight with Google — over search, advertising, consumer online services and control of the personal computing experience. It also has room for Yahoo!

The milestone, though, is that Microsoft seems to have finally moved beyond an organization designed around its Windows desktop legacy. The Windows PC group is no longer the biggest gorilla at Microsoft, and even the developer and tools team has moved over to Raikes’ business group.

This will probably seem really smart 10 years from now, when all of our machines and applications are connected to the Internet; computers are so small, powerful and ubiquitous we don’t really think of them as PCs anymore, and operating systems fade into the background.

Comments | Topics: Microsoft

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