The Xbox One didn’t have exactly an exceptional start due to rather evident mistakes made by the previous leadership of the brand, but Microsoft’s new console has been on the rise in the past months and has gained a lot of popularity due to quite a few promotional master strokes, a compelling set of exclusives and a constant stream of new features added to the core software.
While this is the result of a team effort, it’s doubtless that Phil Spencer, the new head of the Xbox division, played a big role, and also painted a new coat of “cool” on the image of the console due to his constant connection with many fans and dedication to games. His leadership contributed massively to the resurgence of the platform.
But how many really know what he did before he was appointed to his previous role as the head of Microsoft Game Studios? For instance, did you know that he used to work on Microsoft’s now defunct encyclopedia Encarta?
To fill a few gaps, Microsoft sent a press release with a new bio for Xbox’s new boss, including a few interesting details.
As Head of Xbox, Phil Spencer leads the teams responsible for games and entertainment at Microsoft across Xbox, Windows, Surface and Windows Phone. His global creative and engineering teams are transforming the way people play around the world by pushing the boundaries of creativity and technical innovation.
A 25-year veteran of Microsoft, Spencer has been with Xbox from the beginning. Now responsible for Xbox including Xbox Live and Microsoft Studios, Spencer has been instrumental in building a community of more than 95 million Xbox owners and over 48 million Xbox Live members in 42 countries. His influence on blockbuster franchises such as “Halo,” “Gears of War,” “Fable” and “Forza Motorsport” opened up Xbox to other inventive entertainment offerings including a landmark partnership with the NFL and collaborating with Academy Award-winning director Steven Spielberg to bring a “Halo” TV series to life. Under Spencer’s direction, Microsoft acquired Mojang AB, maker of the popular videogame “Minecraft,” in 2014, furthering Xbox’s mission to lead gaming and premier entertainment at the company.
Spencer previously served as general manager of Microsoft Studios and Microsoft Game Studios EMEA, working with the European development community. Before that, he held various roles across Microsoft within Microsoft Encarta, Microsoft Money, Microsoft Works and Microsoft Picture It!
Spencer has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington and currently serves on the boards of the First Tee of Greater Seattle and the Entertainment Software Association. He lives in Bellevue, Washington with his wife and two daughters.
I’m sure I’m not the only one that had no idea that Spencer was into golf (the First Tee of Greater Seattle is a “youth development program which teaches life skills & leadership through golf”).
New Xbox One exclusive golf game confirmed? Not quite, but we’ve lacked a really good one for a while now…