Reports suggest that Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is planning to realign the company, positioning some of his major executives in unfamiliar roles. The restructuring effort appears to be fuelled by the Redmond's newfound interest in "devices and services", a strategic shift first laid out last fall in Ballmer's annual letter to shareholders, customers, partners and employees. Back then, the chief executive noted, "This is a significant shift, both in what we do and how we see ourselves --- as a devices and services company. It impacts how we run the company, how we develop new experiences, and how we take products to market for both consumers and businesses."
Satya Nadella, president of Microsoft's Servers and Tools division; Don Mattrick, president of the Interactive Entertainment division; and Tony Bates, president of Skype communications, are just a few of the prominent execs that might be affected by the corporate redesign according to reports.
This shift in focus is also making itself evident through the upcoming Xbox One console. Although still meant to act primarily as a gaming device, Microsoft intends to make it an all-inclusive entertainment package.
The new system will sport a PC-like architecture that will allow the device to seamlessly integrate TV watching, internet browsing, and playing both music and games. There have also been several rumors about a new 7-inch Surface tablet, an inexpensive Xbox set-top box, and even a Microsoft-based smartwatch.
In addition to the corporate restructure, a major rebranding effort might also be in the works. The Windows brand was nowhere to be seen during the unveiling of the new Xbox One console, and the company's upcoming tablets have simply been marketed under the names Surface Pro and Surface RT, rather than being accompanied by the familiiar "with Windows 8" tagline.The decision to leave out the iconic Windows brand on several of their latest products might be an indication of things to come.