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Microsoft updates Windows Live apps, adds social features

Windows Live
Microsoft is rolling out a number of changes to its portal and Windows Live suite of applications. In a nutshell, the company is trying to add social networking-style features to the web portal. Users will be able to create profile pages where they can connect to other friends, share images and other media, and post short status updates. In other words, it looks a lot like Facebook. But Microsoft will be leveraging its existing services like Hotmail and Windows Live Messenger. Your IM contacts will automatically be added to your Windows Live contact list.

The new Windows Live also supports integration with third party services like Flickr, LinkedIn, Pandora, and Twitter. And Microsoft is increasing the amount of free storage space for Windows Live SkyDrive users from 5GB to 25GB.

Microsoft is doing a phased rollout of the new services, so you may not notice any changes to your account right away. But all existing Windows Live users should see the new features within the next few weeks.

The company is also releasing new versions of its downloadable and web-based applications including Windows live Messenger, Windows Live Hotmail, Windows Live Photos, and Windows Live People, a one stop shop for contact management.

Tags: microsoft, skydrive, windows, windows-live