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back to article Microsoft kills Windows Live brand

Microsoft is killing its Windows Live brand ahead of launching Windows 8, citing "customer confusion". In a mercifully short Windows 8 blog Microsoft said it’s ripping the meaningless umbrella from a bunch of online services. Windows Live covers Hotmail, SkyDrive, and Messenger and is the prefix to its Web 2.0 me-too properties …

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Stick to a ruddy name will you

citing "customer confusion". I'm sure its more confusing that they keep changing ruddy names

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Devil

Re: Stick to a ruddy name will you

Every new relaugh of MSN they killed teh servers each time then demanded you download the new msn messenger. The messenger from XP was just fine! Microsoft should just reenable the XP version to work on all windows versions.

Disgusted they kill a good thing then turn it into a resource hog.

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Eh it never worked anyways

People decided to stick with "MSN" brand years ago. If they wondered around in real world getting out of their cool offices and Intranet, they could figure this fact.

So what do they call it now? Bing messenger? Nobody cares.

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Linux

Re: Eh it never worked anyways

Bing Messenger? never heard of it....

been using pidgin for years now, not least because of the way it handles multiple accounts from multiple networks... though i'm sure there are a load of other good multi-network clients out there...

http://www.pidgin.im/

MS do keep changing the names of stuff, i admit that i've kinda lost track. as long as it all keeps working i'm happy...

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Anonymous Coward

Counter-productive name changing to point of meaninglessness

Defiant: "I'm sure its more confusing that they keep changing ruddy names"

Er, yeah... bingo. This is the same company changed the name of its "passport" service a ludicrous amount of times:-

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microsoft_account

"Microsoft Account (previously Microsoft Wallet, Microsoft Passport, .NET Passport, Microsoft Passport Network, and most recently Windows Live ID)"

I'd have said that MS's stupidly confusing naming is marketing-over-clarity, but *it's not even good marketing!!* I bet the man on the street doesn't have a clue what MS's constantly-changing brands-of-the-week are supposed to mean to him anyway, beyond being a confusing and counter-productive mish-mash of pseudo-terminology.

The quintessential ironic example of how MS just don't get it was their (then-)latest media-player compatibility scheme called "Plays for Sure" which obviously implied Apple-style "no brainer just works" straightforwardness. They proceeded to totally undermine this by renaming it to tie in with "Certified for Windows Vista" (which also encompassed other schemes) and launched a separate, incompatible DRM/compatibility scheme for their now-defunct Zune range. Does anyone know (or care) what MS's attention-deficit clusterf*** of overlapping brands are supposed to mean?!

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Re: Stick to a ruddy name will you

Nah, the messenger from XP (Windows Messenger) was AWFUL and simply caused confusion when there was also the more fully-featured and also-working-on-XP-as-well-as-other-Windows-OS MSN Messenger.

I agree with you about Windows Live Messenger (what MSN Messenger is called now) being a resource hog though.

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Re: Stick to a ruddy name will you

XP messenger was NET SEND wasnt it?

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Anonymous Coward

Changing again?

They're changing the name of MSN messenger again?

Oh dear, thats going to be so terribly confusing when I continue to call it MSN messenger, just like I did when it become Live Messenger. Or maybe not.....

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Re: Changing again?

Unless of course they finally drop it and merge "MSN Messenger" into Skype?

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Facepalm

The Neverending Name Change

Oh yeah, we also still call it MSN Messenger. Though they did a worse job with their Spaces thingy, which at some point ended up being called:

"MSN Live Spaces" and the URL for my space would be something like "http://myself.live.spaces.msn.com" huh?

BTW, now that they're killing "Live", can they pleeease allow us to put nicknames on our MSN Messenger accounts? Currently we're forced into having our full real name put as the handle, instead of a nickname.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The Neverending Name Change

You gave MSN your real name?

Sincerely,

Horus P. McTitty

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Flame

That's nothing.

Try hitting the web service for more gadgets in Windows 7.

Rather than the comprehensive gadget gallery, you now get a brief selection of "more popular" ones, along with an explanation that says something like; "Fuck you, get Windows 8".

So, no gadgets in 8 + people find gadgets useful = pretend they don't exist.

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bring back outlook express

so when windows live mail goes,

what does one use as an email client

or are we all expected to use cloud based stuff, no off line reading ?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: bring back outlook express

how many names has outlook express had now?

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Re: bring back outlook express

Windows live desktop I found to be considerably better than outlook express. Must admit the webmail is genuinely very comprehensive and I rarely use the desktop version.

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Re: bring back outlook express

> what does one use as an email client

Er, an email client? Something which Outlook (Express) isn't, in my book.

-A.

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Mushroom

Re: bring back outlook express

Outlurk Explode? ARE YOU INSANE, SIR?

The biggest virus infection vector that ever existed? It was abysmal!

With any luck the source code was buried upside down in a lead coffin sealed inside the Chernobyl Sarcophagus, or launched on rocket into the sun.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: bring back outlook express

So would you care to name another product that has functionality on the same planet as Outlook/Exchange?

Oh, you can't.

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Go

Re: bring back outlook express

Who said Windows Live Mail is going? Next version will be renamed "Mail". In any case, as usual, there are plenty of third-party apps. Why did you assume that you'll have to use webmail just because of the possibility that ONE e-mail program is discontinued?!

Somebody mentioned the amount of names the software has had. It was first "Internet Mail & News", then "Outlook Express" and now "Windows Live Mail".

Somebody mentioned "Windows Live Desktop" - no such thing. That said, I'm not surprised that person is confused about the name when Microsoft keep on changing it!

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Re: bring back outlook express

I think they may mean "Windows Live Mail", which was known as "Windows Live Mail Desktop" during the beta phases (when Hotmail was briefly going to take the Windows Live Mail name)

RIP Windows Live. Gotta admit I did have a lot of fun beta testing the new versions of Messenger, Hotmail etc. The MSN Hotmail to Windows Live Mail was a fun beta to test out. Lost interest around wave 3 though, and the fragmentation became shocking with the Live Search to Bing rebranding.

It'll be good to see some unification happening with Windows 8.

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"There’s plenty 'o (sic) talk about how Windows 8 will be 'cloud-powered'."

Well that's another good reason for me to stay away from it.

(And shouldn't that be "plenty o' talk"?)

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Anonymous Coward

"cloud powered" "another good reason for me to stay away from it."

+1.

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"it is all included when you turn on your PC for the first time."

and the second time you turn your PC on - it crashes?

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Anonymous Coward

But can you uninstall it?

...or is this another IE vs. Netscape play?

What if I want to use Dropbox instead of SkyDrive, etc?

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FAIL

confusion

It's a bit late to avoid confusion isn't it?

I recall when they bought Hotmail... then then promptly destroyed the brand by relentlessly merging it into whatever flavour of the month web property brand they were working at.

I really hope they've learned their lesson with skype, and they keep it's clear identity.

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Hotmail

They almost killed the brand back in 2005. Of course, someone realized that Hotmail had much more brand recognition than "live mail" so they left it with a midway name change: Windows Live Hotmail.

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Re: Hotmail

Agreed, that was an epic level of stupidity from MS's marketing drones. Just adding "Microsoft" to hotmail would have kept the brand intact and hotmail wouldn't have suffered so much.

...that and not knackering up the webmail user interface almost as often as yahoo.

Unfortunately MS have a track record of buying previously successful branded products and ruining them, for example multimap used to be the place to go for a map but not now. (to be fair the API for multimap was excruciating in the first place, so in some ways it couldn't have got worse).

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"Today the expectation is that a modern device comes with services as well as apps for communication and sharing"

Until all the anti-trust cases start that is, and MS get forced to offer these all as separate downloads. IIRC several of the current Windows Live downloadable apps were originally included in Windows.

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Anonymous Coward

reimagine

that's the MS re-innovation for you :)

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Linux

"Today the expectation is that a modern device comes with services as well as apps for communication and sharing. There is no “separate brand” to think about or a separate service to install"

Congratulations Microsoft, welcome to the late 20th century.

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I thought the real reason for Live, was so that various utilities could be removed from the Windows box, especially those that the EU and other bodies like to sue Microsoft (and no one else) for incorporating into an operating system.

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Meh

Microsoft Blue Screen 8

Sorry Windows 8 has encountered a problem with clouds getting in the way of clouds.

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Petition to save Windows Live Writer

http://www.petitionbuzz.com/petitions/dontkillwlw

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Anonymous Coward

I am not a number I'm a free application!!!

Oh dear oh dear. Microsoft seem to be going through more identity issues. I can't believe they are blaming customer confusion when the only confusion is self inflicted by Microsoft....

From what I've read / seen it looks like when you first set Windows 8 up it'll create a new account (probably @windows.com) then they will try to lock you in to using Skype, their email service, their new (Lynn they've re-badged it you fool!) music service plus the tie ins with x-box live (or should that be x-box windows live well maybe not live anymore live) and of course bing and Facebook....

Fair play to them they've seen Apple target consumers and trap them in a walled garden by creating a locked in ecosystem, so Microsoft are doing their best to shoot corporate customers in the foot to chase the latest whimsical dream (the cloud) forgetting who gives them their bread and butter.....

Roll on Windows 9

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I am not a number I'm a free application!!!

You can log in to Windows 8 with a local account, or with a "Windows Live" account. But your Windows Live account can use any e-mail address - it's not restricted to hotmail or live.com addresses. You can even use a gmail.com address for your "Windows Live" account.

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Re: I am not a number I'm a free application!!!

You may be able to log in with a local account but you won't be able to use the mail app - or the contacts app - or the calendar app if you do.

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Re: I am not a number I'm a free application!!!

So what? Just use a third-party app, like with every single other OS release.

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FAIL

>decided calling something “Windows Live” implied the internet was an imperfect bolt-on "experience".

M$ has considered the internet a bolt on threat from the day one which Bill G at first wanted to have nothing to do with due to its free and open nature. It was only because customers have demanded it they play ball at all and even then they have tried to subvert it at every junction possible (see standards compliance of IE before 2008 or so).

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Anonymous Coward

Windows 8

Will it crash all the time?

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Re: Windows 8

Why not try it and find out? Or is that not in keeping with your pithy remarks?

I've been testing with the Consumer Preview since it came out, and for all of the accusations that can be thrown at it (Metro is not desktop-ready IMO), crashing isn't one of them.

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Coming soon

Windows Live Metro .net Passport Hotmail.

It's everything to everyone.

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Re: Coming soon

Windows8 Live Cloud Skydrive Passport Interwebitubes .net

Although of course they wont actually register the ".net" domain to any of these names

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Anonymous Coward

customer confusion

customers are so stupid, creating all these difficulties,

Microsoft is planning to move them out of the picture

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FAIL

I don't understand why they don't cut through the crap and give everything one name by which everyone knows and instantly associates with their products:

BSODmail

BSODmessenger

BSODdrive

... and so on. Instantly recognizable to everyone.

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Pint

Class

That made me chuckle, have a pint on me

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FAIL

Amen, Gavin!

It’s classic Microsoft, fretting over how something is perceived internally and externally, rather than simply delivering something that works or is wanted.

And that, in a nutshell, is all you have to know about Microsoft (in case you weren't paying attention these last 2-and-something decades).

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Re: Amen, Gavin!

HEY! Since when can we do italics?

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Anonymous Coward

hmm

not sure its a good idea, but MS has been blasted before for the perception of its products rather than its real world use, Win 8 and WP7 being the two most recent examples sooo who knows...

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Anonymous Coward

Microsoft Kills Windows Live

So it's now Windows Dead

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Re: Microsoft Kills Windows Live

@Kaiser Soze

..damn you, I was going to say that..

But seeing as you're there.. who is Kaiser Soze?

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