Elop handed keys to Xbox division at Microsoft

Former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop has been appointed as head of Microsoft’s devices and studios business.

The appointment was expected following rumours earlier this month. Current devices and studios boss Julie Larson-Green is to assume the new role of chief experience officer for the applications and services group.

You are all in great hands with Stephen,” Larson-Green said in a memo obtained by TechCrunch. Already we’ve shared a lot with him and his LT from Nokia regarding all of the fantastic people, teams and products in DnS. I also know many of you are looking forward to welcoming the Nokia team and working more closely with them.”

The bigger question is now whether last year’s claims that Elop – then tipped to become Microsoft’s new CEO, a role since filled by Satya Nadella – harbours plans to sell off the Xbox business in its entirety will prove accurate.

Critics have pointed out that Elop oversaw Nokia’s quite dramatic fall from grace that saw it relinquish its undisputed grip on the global mobile phone market. The counter argument, of course, is that Elop did a solid job of steering Nokia through an unprecedented period of dramatic change to the sector, spearheaded by the rise of the iPhone and smartphones.

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