The site is much better than the old one, in my opinion. The site looks better and more cleaner, and offers new things like tips and reviews, actual quick video demos, and gets straight to the point on what’s the product is all about. It’s a pretty decent site.
However, get.live.com still exists as it’s own page and does pretty much the exact same thing; introduce you to Windows Live services. Maybe they should consider pulling it down or something.
There’s even a special community Clubhouse site where users can share/find reviews and posts about any tips or interesting tidbits they want to share about a particular Windows Live service or product. Nice touch.
I guess I’ll try to find some time to contribute to the Clubhouse by writing some of my own posts of the Windows Live experience. You can even earn special badges for what you post.
That’s pretty neat. Engaging users to share information about tips, great features you love, and other tidbits you find on Windows Live products and services with points and badges. Now if only those could amount to a special reward of some kind one day…
However, as usual, there are some things I wish the new Windowslive.com could address:
- Not ALL Windows Live services/products are represented – The site covers the basic core ones that most people use. But there are others like Calendar, OneCare, Contacts, Favorites, FrameIt, Gallery, Translator, and a few other dev tools that aren’t specified at all. I was really hoping that Microsoft could make ONE site where you can find all the info. you need to know about each and every Windows Live service and products there is. Unfortunately, that’s not there yet.
- Too much focus on Windows Vista – I know how Microsoft is trying to make Windows Live seem as a compliment or "web extension" to Windows Vista, but it just isn’t working right. The problem? Products like Windows Live Mail, Messenger and Writer already work on XP. Yet there’s no mention of XP anywhere besides system requirements. Don’t forget the XP users, Microsoft. A lot of users are still on XP.
- Information about specific products/services could be better – That’s the basic information. But there could be much more information. I scan down the list of "Top Features" and "More features" and there’s not many. Yet I could come up with much more individual ones than that. There also could be actual ratings and reviews, more than one video to show all the nice stuff about the product/service, clear screenshots, current version numbers, archives of old versions and new features introduced with it, among other things. The more information, the better. As long as it’s in a good clean layout.
- The videos are kinda iffy to me – I’m just being blunt here. I really don’t like how the demo videos are designed. There’s a woman with a slightly scratchy voice and is so perky, her voice drives me nuts. The music jingle that accompanies it, is a bit too much and makes me want to puke. The videos make it sound like everything is perfect, a little too perfect. The videos are also very general about the product and service, and they don’t show some neat features, nor are there special videos make for each of these features. I get tired just watching them. If you’re going to make a product/service video, try making it look sleek and cooler. Use a narrator with more excitement and smooth voice. Put some neat effects into it, and make what’s shown more compelling to use. The videos on the site just wouldn’t make me that interested, if I didn’t have a clue about Windows Live stuff.
- Get.live.com needs to go – I never liked that site. I’m wondering who the heck could design such a low-tech site. But at least this site includes a better features list, and include a few screen snippets to accompany each feature. Now that the new Windowslive.com is here, it’s time to just pull the plug on the other site, because you really don’t want to put redundancy in having two very similar sites, do you?
- Site design itself – It’s definitely not bad. It’s clean and simple I guess. But that white can be too stark. There’s a huge waste of blank space at the bottom. Then the playful fonts are a bit too playful for my taste; I expect things to be cool and sleek, not all cheery and perky. I also find the blue and orange color tones to be hideous. I find more to complain as usual, rather than to compliment. Sometimes I’m wondering exactly what demographic is Microsoft going for with Windows Live? The way I see it, NOT teenagers and young adults. The whole feel of the site seems geared towards tweens and younger, or middle-aged people and up. Nothing about the site screams cool or hot. It doesn’t have to, but that’s how I see it.
That’s about it. I don’t have much to complain about the Clubhouse, other than I wish for the same better site design, and include video posts.
I’m looking forward to writing posts for the Clubhouse as soon as I can. You’ll see them on this blog.