Don Mattrick, former Microsoft President of the Interactive Entertainment Business, became Zynga’s CEO on Monday, July 1st. The reasons for his departure are still forthcoming, but this move could be exactly what Microsoft needed to revive their badly damaged Xbox One marketing campaign and hopefully repair the Xbox brand name.
We’ve seen the Xbox brand get dragged through the mud. From the DRM issue through concerns that the Kinect will be spying on gamers, Microsoft lost the trust of a large number of gamers, including myself. Rather than address the concerns in a meaningful way, Microsoft decided to take what many feel to be an arrogant route and decide they knew better than everyone else. They thought they ‘knew’ the future of gaming and would lead the way no matter what.
It was as if Don Mattrick was begging people to not buy their game system.
It has to be seen what he can bring to the table with Zynga. People who know Mattrick call him a very ambitious person who is obsessed with his career progression. So it seems like he would probably see this move as a step up. More will be reported on this as additional details becomes available.
I’m betting Microsoft will use this as an opportunity to repair their tarnished brand image and try to bring back some of their loyal fanbase.