Microsoft Live Search Update Plans Leaked

Dennis Faas's picture

According to reports, Microsoft is getting ready to release a re-branded version of its "Live Search" in an attempt to become a major player in the search engine game.

Since Microsoft recently attempted to join forces with Yahoo, it's not surprising that they are looking for new and improved ways to increase their status as a go-to company for online searching.

What will come to The Market and When?

Messages from Microsoft insiders that were observed on Twitter this week indicate that a pre-beta test version of the "new Live" already exists, and that users can expect some form of official announcement later this week. (Source:

The first Twitter post, attributed to Barney Pell (current Microsoft "evangelist" and strategist), described an updated interface and brand for the Live Search website. Although the post has since been removed from Twitter, Microsoft officials have confirmed that testing is under way -- but since there haven't been any press releases or other official communications, they emphasize that they "are not in a position to confirm what will come to the market or when."

Kumo undercover?

The name "Kumo" has been surfacing as a potential name for the new Live Search, although Microsoft officials haven't committed yet and continue to refer to any new developments as simply "internal test environment[s] [that] ... are launching to a small sampling of employees... this week." (Source:

So far, there is little more than speculation over Microsoft's plans for the re-branding. Karen Young, head of the Microsoft MVP program, stated through Twitter that MS commander-in-chief Steve Ballmer will discuss Live Search in his speech at the MVP party on Wednesday. (Source:

A new brand image may help Microsoft climb above the 10% market share they currently own. However, despite enhanced search features such as celebrity ranking and maps, Live is still miles away from the number-one search engine seat. This seems to be a classic case of "a rose by any other name..." and so far, Google still smells the sweetest.

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