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Microsoft names head of mobile unit

The company appoints Pieter Knook to lead its amalgamated Network Service Provider and Mobile Devices groups as it pushes into mobile software and services.

Microsoft combined its mobile devices and hosting divisions into one unit, and appointed Pieter Knook to head its push into mobile software and services.

Knook will be Corporate Vice President of Microsoft's amalgamated Network Service Provider (NSP) and Mobile Devices groups, the software giant said Friday.

Knook, a 12-year veteran at Microsoft, has also worked in the company's service provider and software businesses, and served as leader of the company's NSP group and president of Microsoft's sales group in Asia.

As head of the combined unit, Knook will work with the Windows CE, Pocket PC and smart phone projects to integrate them into the company's mobile strategy. Microsoft unveiled parts of that strategy in February, when it said it would develop blueprints for phones that will run its Windows Powered Smartphone 2002 operating system.

"The overlap with devices and carriers is where the next opportunity lies," Knook said in a Microsoft release Friday, predicting that most network service providers will see growth from data vs. voice-only services.