Get a personal online portal with Microsoft’s Windows Live

I have just started playing with Microsoft’s Windows Live, which appears to be a personal online portal. It’s similar to Protopage only it has fewer design options and since it’s from Microsoft, authentication is via Microsoft Passport. This also allows your Hotmail e-mail messages to be viewed in the page.

There’s also an instant messenger component to the service and according to the Messenger team blog: “MSN Messenger 7.5 is the last version of the IM client that will wear the MSN brand. The next one will wear Windows Live.”

According to an Associated Press article: “The change reflects Microsoft’s recognition of the growing demand for applications and services that can be used from any place, at any time, as the lines between the home and office blur and portable computing devices become more powerful.”

The site is still not available for Firefox although Microsoft promises to make it accessible to the open source browser soon. I tried accessing it using Opera but it looked broken.

My first impression of the service is that it’s good and I’m considering using it instead of Google Reader to manage my feeds. What’s good about is that its interface is more configurable than Google Reader’s and it comes with a lot of prelisted feeds from popular sites arranged by categories.

The site is a bit slow right now. Maybe traffic is really high or maybe it’s just the fact that I’m using Internet Explorer. I’ll be testing the service extensively in the coming days.

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