We're not sure how it happened (ok, we have an idea) but Microsoft went from confident incumbent to the scrappy tech underdog in the last few years. We're not talking marketshare here, but mindshare. Through it all the Xbox 360 has remained a constant fave and Windows 7 has certainly helped the company rekindle consumer enthusiasm as did the release of the Zune HD. Now, if we're reading our tea leaves correctly, then Microsoft's got a whole lot more in store for 2010. Redmond's already hinted pretty strongly that it's hell-bent on bringing the acclaimed Zune media experience to more devices including its Windows Mobile handsets -- something we hope to see unveiled in Barcelona. The problem, is that dedicated Zune hardware is pretty much restricted to the US and Canada at the moment. A quick look at Microsoft's job boards, however, reveals the need for a London-based "Business Development Manager" responsible for driving European content licensing deals for digital music and support engineering and development divisions including Zune, Xbox, and Windows Mobile. Another Zune-related posting reveals a position for a hardware test engineer with "working knowledge of cell-phone 2G and 3G technologies." We're also seeing that the latest Zune software update is country aware judging by Arne Hess' language and localization testing over at the::unwired. Man, if Microsoft can get its act together and horizontally integrate the best of its killer apps and services then the rest of the industry had better watch out.
International Zune with phone functionality hinted in Microsoft job listings, magic boxes
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