Former Microsoft Exec to Run Macromedias Mobile Devices Division

Juha Christensen, former VP of Microsoft's mobile devices division, has joined Macromedia to run its Macromedia Mobile and Devices Division.

Macromedia Inc. Tuesday announced it has hired a former Microsoft Corp. executive to run its Macromedia Mobile and Devices Division.

The San Francisco company announced the appointment of Juha Christensen, who until November of last year was vice president of the mobile devices division at Microsoft Corp., where he spent more than four years.

Before joining Microsoft, Christensen co-founded Symbian Ltd., a joint venture between Nokia, Ericsson, Sony-Ericsson, Matsushita, Samsung, Siemens and Psion, whose operating system is emerging as an industry standard. Previously, Christensen worked at Psion plc. and helped deliver some of the industrys first PDAs, Macromedia officials said.

Christensen told eWEEK he left Microsoft to launch his own startup company in the "mobile community space" and only two weeks ago started a correspondence with Macromedia officials that resulted in his joining the company.

/zimages/6/28571.gifRead eWEEKs interview with Juha Christensen.

"Macromedia believes strongly in this whole opportunity of mobile and devices, whether it be mobile phones, which is our big push, or things like TV sets and DVD players, car navigation systems and so forth," said Norm Meyrowitz, president of Macromedia products for the rich Internet application tools company. "If they [the developer and user communities] want more multimedia, we really want to get a heavy hitter to run that business. Juha, who has a great track record—from Psion in the old days, to being one of the founders of Symbian, which has the operating system for mobile phones, and then working at Microsoft for the last four years and evolving their mobile device strategy—is fantastic and were very lucky to have him. This signals our belief in this whole mobile and devices opportunity.

"Were excited that over the past year weve been gearing up our mobile devices agenda," Meyrowitz said. "First by having a product called Flash Lite, which is a version of Flash player for mobile phones and is becoming very widely adopted—by folks like DoCoMo in Japan. … We also have a new product called Flash Cast, which is a content delivery service based on allowing lots of different content providers and content developers who use Flash to participate in the whole mobile ecosystem."

Said Christensen of his reasons for joining Macromedia: "I spent the last 10 years or so on the operating system side, really helping define some of the operating systems that will define the phones that well see going forward. And I think those have been some extremely exciting years. What I want to spend the next 10 years on at least is to help enable the experiences that will light up these devices."