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back to article Microsoft sells out of MSN Australia

Microsoft has sold its share of Mi9, the Australian incarnation of the Microsoft Network. Mi9 was once known as “Ninemsn”. The “nine” in both names references the Nine Entertainment Company, owner of one of Australia's three free-to-air commercial television networks. Ninemsn was created by James Packer, son and heir to Kerry …

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Silver badge

Oh dear, really?

"Mi9 remains Australia's third-most-trafficked web property"

I doubt that this would have been the case were it not the default homepage for every PC sold in Australia. Monopolies can be good like that . . .

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Not the only one...

"Mi9 was not a model Microsoft used around the world ..."

It was, however, a model that MS has dabbled in around the world. XtraMSN (with the New Zealand telco Xtra), Sympatico / MSN in Canada, HowzitMSN (with the South African media conglomerate Kagiso), etc. Some of those are even still running...

The original (Win95) MSN was an AOL-like ISP portal / semi-walled garden. In Aus they originally partnered with Telstra to create the 'walled ISP' OnAustralia; when MS dropped out, Telstra thrashed around for a while trying to keep it a walled garden before finally renaming it "Bigpond".

The next incarnation - remember, this was still the time when established companies with money to burn were thrashing about trying to find ways to beat the internet by fragmentation and user lock-in - was a multimedia / interactive sevices ISP & portal with exclusive Pay-TV style content. NineMSN was originally supposed to be the Aus version of that - which explains the Nine involvement - but by the time it got started MS had given up on the idea, decided that the MSN would be the main portal/homepage for all Windows users (using the newly-launched IE & a guided "MSN Quick Launch" icon), and pretty much lost interest.

NineMSN hung around - mainly as the default IE home page for Australian installs - but, apart from supplying content from other properties, MS had little to do with it. The writing was on the wall for NineMSN several years ago when MS couldn't even leverage their local partnership to get TV guide data for Windows Media Centre (Nine own HWW, who hold the copyright to guide data in Aus).

I'm surprised it's taken this long for MS to get rid of it - I guess it was costing them nothing, and maybe even making a little from content sales, so they were happy to let it run until Nine decided to pay them to walk away from it...

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Bronze badge

"Mi( " ?? Really?

Have the Reg proof readers had a holiday recently because that's a bit of a shocker!

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"Mi( " ?? Really?

Eh, it's Monday morning. What'd you expect after a weekend spent productively elbow bending?

Cast your pedantic eye over the other articles just posted, You might be amazed... or appalled. :)

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Anonymous Coward

The cost of features

No effect? Really?

The TV guide portion of NineMSN disabled all logins and notification emails about three weeks ago. If they've just lost a major partner, is that coincidence or cost-cutting?

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The most likely reason for the sell out, a more realistic long term goal of MSN global free of profit sucking partners.

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Bronze badge

All the sucking came from the MSN side.

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