Microsoft job cuts evenly spread

No area spared entirely, though Microsoft's entertainment, server, and business units receive the sharpest blows.

Microsoft spread the 1,400 immediate layoffs broadly across the company's units, according to a source familiar with the cuts.

The software maker announced plans early Thursday to cut up to 5,000 jobs over the next 18 months, with the first round coming right away.

Hardest hit in those initial cuts, according to the source, were Microsoft's Entertainment and Devices unit, followed by the Server and Tools unit and the Microsoft Business Division, which houses Office and Microsoft's Dynamics products.

Microsoft declined to go into detail on its job cuts, though it said in its press release that it was thinning everything from product research and development to support functions such as HR, finance, and information technology. As would be expected, Microsoft said the vast majority of its cuts to be in the greater Seattle area where most of the company's workers are based.

The software maker indicated it is not cutting any specific products, though it is re-evaluating its priorities in some areas. It is still hiring in some businesses, such as search, CEO Steve Ballmer noted on a conference call with analysts.

Anyone who wants to share more detail should feel free to drop me a line.

Update 3:50 p.m.: Microsoft confirmed that the Puget Sound area cuts on Thursday accounted for 872 of the 1,400 jobs that were cut.

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