New MSN Site Offers Bing, Social Networks, News and Location

Big announcement today from MSN, Microsoft’s content network property, as big as their homepage which has just unveiled its new look and feel.  If you’re in the U.S. and you visit MSN from time to time if not on a daily basis, you’ll notice that the website is kind of different right now. Basically, MSN now focuses on four main deliverables - news, social networking, local networking and of course – Bing search.

Actually, the redesign has began as early as November 2009. MSN has been gathering feedback while answering those meaningful ones by way of updates to the site. In fact, they have made 30 updates since November, all courtesy of MSN users who’ve sent their feedback to MSN.

So, what are the new features of the MSN site? Here are the major ones:

It’s all about Bing – Increased Bing search box prominence, new TrendWatch highlighting  the day’s top movers on Twitter, enhanced editorial programming of search-related content, increased prominence of popular searches and testing of search history features

Localization features – Now includes hyper-local tweets, myCities, 3,000 news video clips from 36 local markets delivered in partnership with NBC Local Media and Hearst TV.

Media and News – The homepage now has more media and news items including HD video viewing.

Social Networking – Social networking module of the homepage is now default to Facebook, being the most frequently used, according to MSN.

Basically, MSN is going into the same content-rich homepage design of Yahoo’s content network – something that delivers the goodies to users all in one place. Hopefully, this sparks more interest into the site and converts to more monthly eyeballs for MSN.

MSN adds green channel

MSN Green, the online network’s newest channel, targets eco-conscious Web audiences with informative ‘green’ articles and pictures, videos and other content.

This one-stop online resource for the latest environmental news will provide consumers with environmental information, including articles developed by popular online publications and Web sites, along with multimedia, interactive features and other content compiled from MSN Lifestyle, MSN Money, MSN Autos, MSN Travel, and the network’s other information and entertainment channels.

msngreen MSN adds green channel

MSN Green addresses a growing demand for green news and information, as measured by traffic and visitor click-throughs on the network’s other channels.

The webcast of the July 7, 2007, environmental-awareness concerts on was the most popular online entertainment event in history based on simultaneous viewers, generating more than 15 million streams the day of the concerts and surpassing the number of people who watched the event on TV.

MSN to offer Farecast’s predictive technology on buying airline tickets

farecast msn MSN to offer Farecasts predictive technology on buying airline ticketsMSN and, the airfare prediction web site, announced an agreement in which MSN will offer its users free airfare predictions and planning tools on the MSN Travel Channel. The addition of Farecast’s innovative technology and planning tools on MSN Travel will empower its millions of monthly users to make more informed decisions when planning and shopping for travel.

This agreement marks the first distribution deal for Farecast to bring its unique travel technology and planning tools to a broader consumer audience. Farecast joins the existing list of premier travel content partners on MSN, including Expedia, Frommer’s and Travel+Leisure.

“We are thrilled to partner with MSN,” said Hugh Crean, president and chief executive officer of Farecast. “This agreement is further validation of the value of Farecast’s predictive technology to help people make smarter buying decisions and be more empowered when shopping for travel. MSN is committed to delivering innovative content to its loyal customers, and we look forward to being a part of its growing travel channel.”