Former Microsoft Studios boss Phil Spencer has been named as the new head of Xbox.

Spencer will lead Microsoft's Xbox and Xbox Live services, and its creative teams across Xbox Music, Xbox Video and Microsoft Studios.

His appointment follows the departure of Xbox chief product officer Marc Whitten, who announced earlier this month that he would be leaving Microsoft after 14 years at the company.

"Games and gamers have always been at the core of Xbox and the core of my work-and gaming will be our core as we take Xbox forward," said Spencer.

"This past year has been a growth experience both for me and for the entire Xbox team.  We've taken feedback, made our products better and renewed our focus on what is most important, our customer.  Our mission is to build a world-class team, work hard to meet the high expectations of a passionate fan base, create the best games and entertainment and drive technical innovation. As we continue forward, this renewed focus and mission will be a foundational part of how I lead the Xbox program.

"You will hear much more as we head into E3, but we are at the beginning of an incredible new chapter for Xbox and I can't wait for the days and years ahead.  This is going to be fun."

It's expected that Spencer will report to former Nokia boss Stephen Elop, who is rumoured to have replaced Julie Larson-Green as the head of Microsoft's Devices and Studios Group.