Updated MSN offers something special to Windows 8 users

Lu touts new faces of MSN.com, avoids Explorer’s ‘Do Not Track’ feature Microsoft is redesigning its MSN web portal for users of its new Windows 8 platform, which will feature the portal prominently on computers running the new OS. Qi Lu, Microsoft’s president of web services, showed off the new design, with colored tiles similar […]

Lu touts new faces of MSN.com, avoids Explorer’s ‘Do Not Track’ feature

Microsoft is redesigning its MSN web portal for users of its new Windows 8 platform, which will feature the portal prominently on computers running the new OS.

Qi Lu, Microsoft’s president of web services, showed off the new design, with colored tiles similar to Windows 8, Windows Phone and the Surface tablet, at the IAB’s MIXX Conference and Expo in New York City.

In addition to a new look, the long-neglected portal, a joint venture with Comcast‘s NBC News, will be tightly integrated into Windows 8, including home-screen placement on devices powered by Microsoft’s new operating system coming this fall. “We, at Microsoft, are completely reimagining the portal experience,” he said.

Lu also unveiled new looks for Microsoft’s search engine, Bing, as well as for MSN Money and Bing News, an image-driven news service that owes much to the look and feel of Microsoft’s Surface tablet.

In his remarks, Lu did not mention the Do Not Track feature on the upcoming Internet Explorer browser, which has caused some hand-wringing in the online ad industry. He did, however, restate Microsoft’s commitment to the ad business in general and how ad experiences will be integrated into Windows 8.

“We are using Windows 8 platforms to reimagine digital surface areas,” he said. “Some of those experiences are naturally ad-funded. That is why advertising is an important business for us.”

Only users of Windows 8 and Microsoft’s IE 10 will get the new look, an attempt to stamp Microsoft’s look and feel on a world of web services and apps that work seamlessly across Microsoft-powered machines. Lu said Microsoft is using Windows 8 as a challenge to Apple, Google and Amazon, which are increasingly building vertical systems of apps, services and devices.

Microsoft websites are the second most-visited in the U.S. with 170 million unique visitors in August, according to ComScore.

To read the original article in Advertising Age, click here.

Brands Articles

Future Shop stores closing, some converting to Best Buys

Closure will result in the loss of 500 full-time and 1,000 part-time jobs

CMOs want the “brand” back in branded content

At IAB Engage, marketers for Molson, Kraft, Cara Foods talk branded content strategy

Airbnb signs deal to sponsor 2016 Rio Olympic Games

Online community is the Games' first alternative accommodations sponsor

Grey Canada gets a shot at Tequila Herradura

Brown-Forman brand awards digital CRM and below-the-line duties to WPP shop

Metro pairs fashion with food

Grocer partners with fashion magazine Flare on food-focused marketing campaign

Activia kicks off campaign with world record attempt

Yogurt brand positions itself as a "lifestyle partner" through Rogers Media partnership

HBO Canada gives fans a chance to sit on the Iron Throne

Selection of Game of Thrones products available at Toronto pop-up shop

Frank & Oak push pop-up competition in the U.S.

Montreal-based retailer is giving consumers the power to pick temporary locations

How to create an engaging flyer

Expert Patrick Rodmell shares five best practices that apply to all retail sectors