When I held Friday’s poll anticipating today’s announcement of the big shakeup at Microsoft, most respondents wanted to wait for details before deciding whether it had a strong chance for success or not. Now we know, so I’m going to ask again. As the Seattle Times’ Janet Tu reports, CEO Steve Ballmer will realign the company by reducing the number of product divisions by half while centralizing such areas as marketing, finance and business development.
The goal is to help transform the software giant into a “devices and services” company better prepared for a world where PCs are fading, or at least growing much more slowly. Also to break down barriers between units and outside partners, move more entrepreneurially. Thus, engineering functions will be Operating Systems, Applications and Services, Cloud and Enterprise, Devices and Studios. In a memo, Ballmer wrote:
Going forward, our strategy will focus on creating a family of devices and services for individuals and businesses that empower people around the globe at home, at work and on the go, for the activities they value most.
We will do this by leveraging our strengths. We have powered devices for many years through Windows PCs and Xbox. We have delivered high-value experiences through Office and other apps. And, we have enabled enterprise value through products like Windows Server and Exchange. The form of delivery shifts to a broader set of devices and services versus packaged software. The frontier of high-value scenarios we enable will march outward, but we have strengths and proven capabilities on which we will draw.
Ballmer haters will not be satisfied; he’s staying. Shares are up more than 2 percent as I write. Read the story and tell me what you think. The comments section also awaits your responses.
Today’s Econ Haiku:
Europe goes left, U.S. right
Will the seams meet up?