reported earlier today that some shakeups were on the way from
Microsoft with regards to its Entertainment & Devices Division.
It had already been widely speculated that J. Allard, chief
experience officer and chief technology officer, was leaving. It was
also reported that Robbie Bach could also be shown the door.
now reports that both Allard and Bach are leaving Microsoft.
According to TechFlash's Todd Bishop, the departure of Allard
and Bach will give CEO Steve Ballmer more direct control over
Microsoft's struggling sectors (namely its Zune and Windows Mobile
Although there has been speculation that Allard might jump ship to
Google and work on that
company's tablet efforts, he refuted those claims and said that
he wants to unwind for a bit and tackle “personal interests”
after working at Microsoft for 19 years.
For his part, Ballmer stated the following in a company email
announcing the departures:
Transitions are always hard. Robbie
has been an instrumental part of so many key moments in Microsoft
history — from the evolution of Office to the decision to create
the first Xbox to pushing the company hard in entertainment overall.
J as well has had a great impact in the market and on our culture,
providing leadership in design, and in creating a passionate and
involved Xbox community, and earlier being at the center of our work
seizing the importance of the Web for the company...
Both have been great team builders
with a strong record of attracting, coaching and growing talent. As a
result, their teams are primed to continue to step up and deliver
great products, great services and great results for the company.
You can read Ballmer's full email to the troops here.
quote: No, it's not better in almost every regard. The only point which can be argued is the UI's better, but that's simply a matter of personal preference. My iPod has 500 available accessories for every one for a Zune, and honestly saying 500:1 I might be giving MS too much credit.
quote: iTunes is better, for the smart playlists alone. I know Zune supports some sort of auto smart playlists. But what Apple had done with them is simply amazing.
quote: Lesse, I can't think of anything her Zune does better. Wireless Sync is a boring feature, and it's on the Touch now so that's a moot point
quote: And personally I like my Touch's UI better. The Zune HD is a lot better than the old 30's, but it's still not as good. The 30's were fucking horrible to use. iPod also gets more points in its favor because I can use a dozen different programs to sync. Zune has one, and the software is a POS which took all the mp3's I spent months organizing and properly tagging. And without asking me changed cover art & ID3 tags on about 70% of my music. Very randomly, I'm still trying to fix everything MS's software fucked up.