CNET News.com: MSN overhaul takes many cues from rival AOL

“The software giant is fine-tuning an overhaul of its MSN
Internet service that imitates numerous features from archrival
America Online. As previously reported, the company tomorrow will
make available the second preview version of the service–dubbed
MSN Explorer–that not only integrates all of Microsoft’s online
offerings under a single interface but also gives the entire World
Wide Web a proprietary Microsoft feel.”

“A release date for a commercial version of MSN Explorer has not
been announced, although a company spokeswoman said tomorrow’s
preview likely will be the final beta version. … MSN product
manager Sarah Lefko… said Microsoft will begin offering broadband
service through MSN via satellite and digital subscriber lines
(DSL) by the end of the year.”

“The MSN overhaul comes as the company embarks on a new,
companywide Internet strategy, called Next Generation Windows
Services, which is aimed at fending off Web-based rivals,
applications, and upcoming operating systems like the Linux and
Palm operating systems.”

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