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June 27, 2006

Windows Live Spaces coming July 15?

Posted by David Hunter at 11:15 AM ET.

Ed Oswald at BetaNews:

Microsoft said Friday that it was preparing to migrate its Spaces blogging service to its Windows Live brand, and with the change the company will add new features and tighter integration with other Windows Live services.

Although no specific date for the switch has been announced, sources tell BetaNews the service is expected to debut July 15.

Hit the link for all the new features including social networking enhancements, but here’s the ka-ching part:

Banner ads will replace the current method of using text ads across the top of the site. Microsoft has said in the past that advertising would support the Windows Live service, keeping it free. However, an option is provided to turn off the ads by subscribing to the Hotmail Plus service.

And Hotmail Plus is $19.95 per year. I expect there will be some resistance to this form of monetization which bears an unfortunate resemblance to the old “build your own Web site” services (e.g. GeoCities) and their annoying banners, although the early screenshots at the Spaces blog make it look less intrusive. It also doesn’t help that Google’s free Blogger service has no mandated ads, but offers the blogger the option of making some money with Google’s AdSense contextual ads.

Filed under Advertising, Coopetition, General Business, Google, MSN, MSN Spaces, Microsoft, Windows Live, Windows Live Spaces

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2 Responses to “Windows Live Spaces coming July 15?”

  1. Windows Live Spaces goes gold -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] LiveSide says Windows Live Spaces is Live! This is the upgraded MSN Spaces personal blogging service, now with the Windows Live brand. We mentioned some pertinent features back in June when it had been rumored to be shipping in mid-July. Check it out for yourself at I wonder what kind of marketing it will get? Filed under Technologies, MSN, MSN Spaces, Blogs, Windows Live, Microsoft, Windows Live Spaces   [Permalink] [...]

  2. Blogging dustup over Windows Live Spaces -- Microsoft News Tracker Says:

    [...] My own take is much simpler: what really matters are eyeballs and monetization. On eyeballs, earlier in the year, Microsoft was touting comScore numbers that showed 100 million unique Spaces visitors in April 2006 and made Spaces “the most widely used blogging service worldwide.” On monetization, Spaces isn’t a charity activity since Microsoft is running ads unless the Spaces bloggers ante up for a Hotmail Plus subscription, but information on profitability is in short supply. Presumably, it is intended to be merely a part of the entire Windows Live gestalt, but you can’t expect to lose money on every piece and make money on the whole. Filed under Technologies, MSN, MSN Search, General Business, Hotmail, Blogs, Windows Live, Online Services, Ad-supported software, Microsoft, Windows Live Spaces   [Permalink] [TrackBack] [...]

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