MSN Messenger Integration

There is a new version of MSN Messenger for general use. It’s MSN Messenger 7.5.0322. While it still needs the ability to communicate with (and through) other IM networks, it is one of the nicest client programs I’ve seen.

First, I must apologize. This is the first version I’ve loaded of MSN Messenger for quite some time. While at my previous employer, we used Windows Messenger – not MSN Messenger. Therefore, there was no “integration” with other Microsoft products/services on the Internet. In fact, our Messenger infrastructure was a walled garden. Yes, it used SIP and was a great enterprise client – but it was walled off from the outside world. So my knowledge of previous builds is quite dated.

Well, this build is nice. It has a crisp look and feel. It is a little cluttered, but that’s because there are so many integration points. If you have a Hotmail account, you can instantly see how many messages you have (and whether or not they’ve been read). If you have an MSN Spaces blog, you can see your most recent post – and click your way directly to that posting.

And then there is the downside of integration. I now have tabs that link to free movies, free audio and a dating service. Personally, I don’t care for these integration points, but I’m sure that some folks do care about these. Of course, you can rearrange the tabs, but I’d love to remove them. In any event, I cant wait to see what this looks like on the Sprint PPC-6700.

From my viewpoint, I’m starting to see product integration from a whole new angle – strictly as a consumer. I can integrate my blog, my email, my presence, and my voice in a single place. And I really like the “look and feel” of the intgration I’m seeing. Every frustrated and concerned BlackBerry owner needs to take a serious look at where complete integration is headed. Now if integration can only transcend to true interoperability!




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