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Old 05-29-2010, 12:00 AM
Jason Dunn
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Default It's Official Robbie Bach and J Allard are Stepping Down

<p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com/resizer/thumbs/size/600/wpt/auto/1275085702.usr1.jpg" style="border: 1px solid #d2d2bb;" /> <img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com/resizer/thumbs/size/600/wpt/auto/1275085712.usr1.jpg" style="border: 1px solid #d2d2bb;" /></p><p>I <a href="http://www.windowsphonethoughts.com/news/show/98194/has-j-allard-left-microsoft.html" target="_blank">posted about this rumour</a> recently, but now it's official: J Allard has left he building...although it seems he's going to be sticking around a little bit, working on special projects for Steve Ballmer. Robbie Bach, on the other hand, is <a href="http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/press/2010/may10/05-25transition.mspx?rss_fdn=Press Releases" target="_blank">full-on retiring and leaving Microsoft</a>. Bach has worked at Microsoft for 22 years, a long time in the tech industry. Who's stepping in to fill the voice? No one for now:</p><p><em>"Underscoring the strength of the leadership teams in place for the entertainment and mobile businesses, the company announced that Senior Vice President Don Mattrick will continue to lead the Interactive Entertainment Business and Senior Vice President Andy Lees will continue to lead the Mobile Communications Business. Each will report directly to CEO Steve Ballmer effective July 1."</em></p><p>Ballmer says that <a href="http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9177354/Ballmer_Robbie_Bach_just_wanted_to_retire" target="_blank">Bach just wanted to retire</a> - it's not a reflection of his performance. J Allard wrote a really great letter about his time at Microsoft - <a href="http://blogs.technet.com/b/microsoft_blog/archive/2010/05/26/if-you-want-to-change-the-world-with-technology.aspx" target="_blank">it's worth reading</a>, but this one quote really stood out to me:</p><p><em>"Please, put my headcount and that cardkey "invitation" to good use. Find a college student that claims we don't get it and blogs tirelessly about our lack of agility. Track down an EE that has been focusing on fuel cells and has radical thoughts about power management. Or a social networking whiz who is tired of building little islands that go hot and cold and can't break the mainstream. Hire a designer who's given shape to 2 decades of beautiful automobiles and thinks we can sculpt technology to better connect to users. Infuse them with our purpose. Give them the tools. Give them lots of rope. Learn from them. Support where they take you. Invite them to redefine The Tribe."</em></p><p>I couldn't agree more. If anything has been shown by the past few years of Microsoft's performance in the mobile space, they need to bring in more fresh blood, with fresh ideas, and continue to agitate and move the company forward. Zune is still a USA-only product, Microsoft has no OS capable of running on thin and light tablets, and Windows Phone 7 is long overdue. Microsoft is in a rough spot with all things mobility. Good thing the Xbox 360 and Windows 7 rock!</p>
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Old 05-29-2010, 01:02 AM
David Tucker
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I think unless MS reinvents themselves in a major way and soon, they're in deep trouble. Because Windows 7 is such a good product, they should have a good revenue stream for a while. They need to not sit on that and get a move on. Because they make a lot of money right now, their problems are pretty hidden from sight but I think they have serious issues on their hands.

And it starts at the top.
 
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Old 05-29-2010, 01:10 AM
ptyork
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I'd say new blood is probably a good thing. Too bad Google got Palm's Matias Duarte. He'd have been a good get for MS to help fill some of Allard's many shoes. But regardless, I do think that there must be some good, fresh blood to be had either internally or externally. They need to stop R&D'ing things into oblivion and bring some truly innovative mobile tech to market. ASAP.
 
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Old 05-29-2010, 03:04 AM
mrozema
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Based on that quote, Allard had the right idea. Too bad he's on his way out.
 
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Old 05-29-2010, 04:13 AM
Rob Alexander
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If Allard were staying and was saying he would do those things, then I'd see a glimmer of hope. But that he's leaving, and showing us on the way out that he really gets it, means that he couldn't make it happen under current management. I don't know why MS cannot make themselves visionary and leading edge -- their research people are doing amazing things -- but nothing truly revolutionary ever makes it to market. (See death of Courier.)

Windows 7 really is excellent, but I worry about even that dominance. MS still thinks that the mobile market is secondary and controlled by compatibility with the desktop. I think they've missed a paradigm shift. The future is in the mobile space and I believe we are entering a time when compatibility with mobile devices may well determine people's desktop choices. I've seen more than one person I know get hooked on the iPhone and end up moving from Windows to Mac a year later.
 
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Old 05-29-2010, 05:50 PM
jmurphy
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Default headline typo

"robbie back" vs bach
 
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