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September 22, 2006

Brand Naming: Is Microsoft's "Live" Dead?

Windows Live LogosI am now pretty sure that the Microsoft Live Search Center product name has been scrapped.

The news is not firm yet but a few very reputable blogs, including Liveside, show that evidence exists, supported by a recent newsgroup post at MSDN, to announce that Live Search Center is going to be renamed Windows Search Preview. Liveside gives us a nice history of the ill-starred product name:

  • Originally codenamed Casino and internally called OneView
  • Announced by Bill Gates as just Windows Live Search
  • Named as Windows Live Search Center by Steve Ballmer
  • Now being called Windows Search Preview

This may actually herald the end of the Live product name itself (although I doubt it). We have all known that there have been problems with the Live brand name that have been picked up by the press especially as it applies to the Windows search engine and it seems somebody in Redmond was listening.

This is the second application, after MSN Soapbox, to lose the “Live” name and I am sure that trend will continue: the Live name is now appended to email, domain hosting and games, and it’s just too confusing.

Watch out for the official announcement, it’s surely on the way, just as more Live products are going to be renamed.

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Posted by William Lozito at September 22, 2006 8:56 AM
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