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March 21, 2012 at 1:55 PM

Windows Phone head Terry Myerson named a VentureBeat Top Mobile Mover

Myerson.jpgHe’s accused Apple of shipping OS updates that make its hardware unusable and talked bluntly about the need for more and better Windows Phone marketing.

Now Terry Myerson, the plain-spoken head of Windows Phone, has been named by online publication VentureBeat as one of its top 10 “Mobile Movers for 2012.”

Myerson, corporate vice president of Windows Phone division, took over as head of the division in December. That was when Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced that he was moving then-Windows Phone President Andy Lees to “a new role working for me on a time-critical opportunity focused on driving maximum impact in 2012 with Windows Phone and Windows 8.”

(Curiously, Lees has retained the title of president — though not of president of Windows Phone — while Myerson remains a CVP.)

Within the Windows Phone division, Myerson led the engineering team responsible for delivering the software for Windows Phone 7 and 7.5.

Now he faces the immense challenge of trying to gain traction for the smartphone platform, which currently holds less than 1.5 percent of the worldwide smartphone platform market and less than 5 percent of the U.S. market, by some research firms’ estimates.

Here’s why VentureBeat says it chose Myerson as one of its “disruptive individuals who are reshaping the mobile industry:”

Noted for his “no-nonsense” approach, Myerson helped lead the charge for Microsoft’s momentous “reset,” when the company essentially threw out everything it had been doing with Windows Mobile and reinvented its mobile operating system from the ground up.

The gamble was a big one, and it’s still too soon to tell whether it will pay off. Microsoft is coming from far behind both iOS and Android, and has far to go before it can even catch the BlackBerry in the smartphone market. But if anything has the potential to be a spoiler in this fight, it’s Windows Phone. Microsoft’s partnership with heavyweight phone maker (and fellow smartphone also-ran) Nokia gives it even more clout.

Myerson talked earlier this year about the need to boost Windows Phone marketing. The division just this week announced the hiring of Thom Gruhler, formerly of McCann Worldwide who led a group that came up with the (in)famous “Can you hear me now?” Verizon campaign, to head Windows Phone marketing.

(Photo of Myerson from Microsoft)

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