I still need the reassurance of a familiar brand before it's a real story - Tony Maddox, CNN senior VP
SOFTWARE HOUSE Microsoft could shut down its search engine Bing and sell off the Xbox gaming franchise to concentrate on Microsoft Office if Nokia CEO Stephen Elop gets the CEO position, a report claims.
According to Bloomberg, Microsoft CEO shortlist candidate Elop is preparing for interviews and apparently has big plans to pitch, including focusing on Microsoft Office applications to deliver them to smartphones and tablets, including Apple's and Google's.
Bloomberg's report, which is said to come from sources "with knowledge of his thinking", said Elop would rid the company of distractions to focus on Microsoft Office applications like Word, Excel and Powerpoint, and would go as far as to kill the Bing search engine and sell its Xbox division in order to do so.
It said, "Elop would probably move away from Microsoft's strategy of using these programs to drive demand for its flagship Windows operating system on personal computers and mobile devices, said the people."
Analysts have previously put forward the idea of dropping Xbox and Bing to increase Microsoft's profits in the short term, so the idea isn't as far fetched as it sounds.
Elop is a favourite to take over as Microsoft CEO next year after Steve Ballmer announced in September that he will retire from the company "within the next 12 months". µ
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