Vista To Embed Windows Live Services

    August 17, 2006

Looks like Microsoft is going the very dangerous route of embedding links Windows Live services in Windows Vista.

Mary Jo Foley has heard from some Vista testers that the next private build, 5506, will contain links in the Welcome Screen to Windows Live Messenger, Windows Live OneCare, Windows Live Toolbar and Windows Live Mail Desktop, as well as including Windows Live Messenger in the Start Menu.

Bink has a screenshot.

Wow, I guess Microsoft figured it had finished most of the old antitrust lawsuits, so why not give Google a chance? Sergey Brin and Larry Page can rest easy that, even if their companies loses to Microsoft, they can probably pull in at least half a billion in a lawsuit.

But seriously, Microsoft needs to tread carefully. Bundling software in the operating system has been hurting them badly for years (and is arguably the single mistake the company made that is responsible for its current stagnation) and almost split up the company. I know Microsoft wants so badly to beat Google, but they are already doing a good job of developing services, so just be careful how you promote them.

In the case of Live Messenger, this is really unnecessary. Live Messenger is the successor to MSN Messenger, the number one worldwide IM client. Microsoft doesn’t need to push this as much as it needs to push everyone to upgrade.

As for Live Mail Desktop, it is a superset of Windows Mail, the mail client in Windows Vista. Instead of taking any chances, why not embed most of the Live Mail Desktop features in Windows Mail? Better yet, why not have the account setup dialog in Windows Mail say “Need to use Mail with a Hotmail/Live Mail account? Click here to download an updated version called Windows Live Mail Desktop”?

Finally, for Windows OneCare: I’ve said this before; Vista should annoy users who don’t have antivirus. Every time the computer boots, and every day at 12 noon, the OS should fill the entire screen with a warning against the dangers of not having antivirus. Merely by expanding the market, Microsoft will make a ton of money, especially with its low-priced offering.


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Nathan Weinberg writes the popular InsideGoogle blog, offering the latest news and insights about Google and search engines.

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