November 9, 2009 Leave a comment
Microsoft has “cut through the clutter” and unveiled the most major facelift to the web portal site in a decade. Buffing the new logo that Long Zheng managed to locate, the new MSN is simplified, clean, informative, and elegantly minimal. One of the first things that you notice is the simplicity of the new MSN; the press release even states that the new home pages has 50% less links than its predecessor.
“Now is the time to clean up the mess on the Web — people need less clutter and less hassle to find what matters most to them,” said Erik Jorgensen, corporate vice president, Microsoft. “Microsoft is uniquely invested in search, media experiences and technical innovation. Combining these assets to deliver our new MSN home page is a tremendous win for customers and advertisers.”
Along with the simplifying, there’s also some new spiffy features that’s sure to make MSN more useful for many. With a page dedicated to local news in an area of your choosing, Twitter and Facebook integration, closer Bing integration, and integration with the Windows Live “What’s New” feature, which ties in with 50 or so social networking sites.
Here are some of the key features in the new home page, quoting the press release:
- Innovative search technology from Bing. Deeper Bing integration on the new home page helps people make faster and more informed decisions and easily find the information they want from anywhere on the Web. Bing is deeply integrated as the core search service throughout the home page via key areas such as shopping, travel and local, and as a way of highlighting hot topics, trends or people.
- Information and news people care about. The new home page delivers against the No. 1 customer request — simplicity and ease of use — through its fresh design and smart categorization. In-line high-quality, top news and hot entertainment from trustworthy sources such as MSNBC, FOX Sports, Hulu and Hearst, and comprehensive local information provide a compelling one-stop shop for people to use as their home base online. More in-depth local information is offered on the new MSN Local Edition, which is the only local online source that smartly combines media with Bing search and provides access to real-time community news that is grouped by ZIP code.
- Convenient ways to communicate. Simplicity drove the clean integration of popular social networks, such as Facebook, Twitter and Windows Live “What’s New,” which aggregates up to 50 Web activities, including Yelp, Flickr, Pandora and more, onto the MSN home page. People no longer have to jump from site to site to update their status, tweets or see what their friends are up to; the new home page makes it easy to view and update in-line.
With much of the online world turning to portal sites such as MSN for their news and other interesting content, it’s important that these sites are as useful and nice as possible. If you would like to explore the new MSN home page, which is currently in preview form, you may do so here.
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