RealTime IT News

Microsoft's New-Look Digital Deck

In an attempt to keep pace with Apple and Sony in the digital entertainment space, Microsoft has split its entertainment and devices division into four businesses.

The restructuring gives more control to executives that oversaw the creation and launch of the Xbox 360 game console, according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.

The chief of the entertainment and device unit, Robbie Bach, who is responsible for launching Microsoft's Xbox video game business, announced the new "digital Home" strategy in an e-mail Wednesday to executives, the Journal said.

"While I will continue to play an important role in the games area, I will spend more time thinking about our broader challenges and opportunities across the division," Bach wrote in the e-mail.

The reorganization comes only months after Redmond streamlined its operations into three divisions.

The software maker's entertainment and devices group will now consist of four divisions, including the entertainment business division, which will handle music, TV and video, and the interactive entertainment business division, which will oversee the gaming business, including the Xbox, according to the report.

The reorganization is expected to ramp up business before next year's arrival of Sony's PlayStation 3 and Nintendo's Revolution.

"The market is rife with new opportunities. Yet we face a strong group of competitors," Bach wrote in the memo. "My role is evolving to focus more on longer-term strategy, partner relationships and business management within E&D and across the company."

Bach said Bryan Lee would take over as head of a new entertainment business charged with overseeing the company's growing digital efforts in music, television and video, according to the report.

Microsoft will also expand the role of Peter Moore as head of the interactive entertainment business, while Tom Gibbons will remain in charge of the consumer productivity experiences unit.

Pieter Knook will remain head of the mobile and embedded business and the communications sector sales force, according to the report.