It was rumored that Microsoft planned on retiring its Windows Live Messenger service in favor of Skype, and rather than keep users guessing, the Redmond software maker has now confirmed that's indeed the case. Skype's Tony Bates made the official announcement in a blog post, adding that Messenger users can port their contacts over to Skype by updating to the latest version of the VoIP software.
Internet service providers aren't the only companies getting in on the copyright cop action; Microsoft recently began blocking Windows Live Messenger messages containing links to the Pirate Bay. If you try to send a Pirate Bay URL to a buddy, WLM will now slam on the brakes and tell you that piratebay.se has been "reported as unsafe."
For those of us whose love for the world is too big to be contained by one social network, staying on top of the updates to all of the services we frequent can be tough, especially when meat-space distractions such as our jobs and families become part of the equation. Fortunately, thanks to Yoono, our Browser Extension of the Week, you'll have ample time to keep up to date with the people you adore as well as take time for the ones you merely tolerate.
Windows Live Essentials 2011, now available in a public beta, is the local client component of Microsoft Windows Live, a collection of programs and web services. WLE 2011’s components include photo editing and organization (WL Photo Gallery), video editing (WL Movie Maker), email and calendar (WL Mail), instant messaging and social media (WL Messenger), blogging (WL Writer), cross-platform file synchronization and Windows remote access (WL Sync), and web and IM filtering (WL Family Safety). Before the public beta was released in late June, Windows Live Essentials 2011 was known as Windows Live Essentials Wave 4. In this article, you’ll learn what new and improved features the latest WLE wave brings with it.
Comscore has released its March U.S. search engine market share numbers, and the results might surprise you. While the vast majority of the Internet still turns to Google for search (65.1%), Bing has posted an aggressive share gain hitting a record 11.7%. What's even more interesting is that it turns out most of the hit came from ex-googler's as Yahoo's fortunes also nudged up ever so slightly to 16.9%.
Microsoft's growth in the search engine market has been slow and steady since the Bing rebranding, but its refreshing to see their might actually be some competition left in the search market. Its hard to imagine that this trend could continue indefinitely, but as we all know healthy competition is great news no matter which way you look at it. For those keeping score this is also the tenth straight month of share gains for Bing.
A recent ComScore survey on Internet usage is reporting that Microsoft might not be leading the way in search, but in terms of total hours spend online, it has a commanding lead over its competition. The survey, which measured a whopping 27 billion hours of Internet usage by Web users aged 15 or older is an increase of nearly 24% over the year prior, and of those studied, over 3.9 billion hours were spent using Microsoft services. Google came in a not so close second place with around 2.5 billion hours.
The big winner in the Microsoft portfolio might surprise you however, with about 70 percent of the usage being attributed to Windows Live Messenger. Of course, this number measures time spent “online” and not just those “actively engaged” with the service, but it certainly shows the popularity of Microsoft’s instant messenger. Google’s numbers are pretty typical explain analysts, since they make it their business using search to try and get you “in and out” as quickly as possible. The most successful Google property continues to be YouTube with nearly 1.2 billion hours logged watching video.
Yahoo placed third with 1.7 billion hours, and Facebook commanded a respectable fourth place with 1.4 billion hours. The individual rankings may have been a bit of a shock, but the trend showing “Internet usage on the rise” certainly isn’t. Did any of these results surprise you? Let us know what you think.
Jealous of Dr. Evil's Mini-Me? Worried about running out of Hot Pockets if you had a miniaturized version of yourself? Stop worrying - you can now create your very own 2D "mini-me" for free with Minimise-Me.
To learn more about the process, and to find out how you can put your screen-sized 2D double to work, join us after the jump.